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Cannabis 'might boost memory'

Cannabis 'might boost memory'
21st November 2008

Scientists have suggested that cannabis might actually boost memory.

The idea is that specific elements of the plant - also known as marijuana - can reduce inflammation in the brain and possibly stimulate the formation of new cells, according to a team of researchers based at Ohio State University in the US.

If it is indeed found to be the case, the scientists said that it could provide hope of a therapy to delay the onset of Alzheimer's disease.

"What we are saying is it appears that a safe, legal substance that mimics those important properties of marijuana can work on receptors in the brain to prevent memory impairments in ageing," explained Gary Wenk, professor of psychology and principle researcher.

The expert's work is already said to have shown encouraging effects in animals and the team is now moving ahead to examine how it actually works.

Meanwhile, those who get their recreational pleasure from the occasional glass of red wine may have taken encouragement from a separate study which suggested the drink may have therapeutic benefits.

A study published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry found that polyphenols in the wine could combat toxic plaques associated with the development of Alzheimer's disease.

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