Front Psychiatry. 2021 Feb 5;12:597725. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2021.597725. eCollection 2021.
Patients with a serious mental illness often use cannabis at higher rates than the general population and are also often diagnosed with cannabis use disorder. Clinical studies reveal a strong association between the psychoactive effects of cannabis and the symptoms of serious mental illnesses. Although some studies purport that cannabis may treat mental illnesses, others have highlighted the negative consequences of use for patients with a mental illness and for otherwise healthy users. As epidemiological and clinical studies are unable to directly infer causality or examine neurobiology through circuit manipulation, preclinical animal models remain a valuable resource for examining the causal effects of cannabis. This is especially true considering the diversity of constituents in the cannabis plant contributing to its effects. In this mini-review, we provide an updated perspective on the preclinical evidence of shared neurobiological mechanisms underpinning the dual diagnosis of cannabis use disorder and a serious mental illness. We present studies of cannabinoid exposure in otherwise healthy rodents, as well as rodent models of schizophrenia, depression, and bipolar disorder, and the resulting impact on electrophysiological indices of neural circuit activity. We propose a consolidated neural circuit-based understanding of the preclinical evidence to generate new hypotheses and identify novel therapeutic targets.
Source: ncbi 2