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Drug & Nutrition Roundup

August 16, 2013

New research shows that marijuana may be harmful to adolescent brain development.



Pot and the developing brain. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.


The early teen years may be the worst time to smoke marijuana, according to University of Maryland researchers. They report in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology that at least in mice, exposure to marijuana in adolescence causes long-term brain abnormalities. While the exposures had no lasting effect on adult mice, in young mice, even mild exposure caused significant cognitive deficits later in life.

In other news, researchers at the University of Adelaide in Australia report that male mice that were overfed until they became obese had changes in their sperm that predisposed their offspring to become overweight, too. In addition, the offspring had a higher risk of metabolic disease similar to diabetes. The work is the latest to suggest that just as with women, men’s dietary habits can affect their unborn kids. I’m Bob Hirshon, for AAAS, the science society.