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AOD STATS
Interactive
Data Site

Introduction: Welcome to AODstats, the Victorian alcohol and drug interactive statistics and mapping webpage.
AODstats provides information on the harms related to alcohol, illicit and pharmaceutical drug use in Victoria.

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Teens who use a lot of marijuana and alcohol are less likely to have a full-time job when they grow up, or to get a college education or get married, according to a new study by University of Connecticut researchers.

The study of 1,165 young adults from across the U.S. also found that dependence on pot and booze may also have a “more severe effect on young men” than on young women.

This study found that chronic marijuana use in adolescence was negatively associated with achieving important developmental milestones in young adulthood.

— Elizabeth Harari, University of Connecticut researcher

Young women who were dependent on marijuana and alcohol were also less likely to go to college and had a lower standard of living than nondependent women, but were equally likely to be employed full time and to get married as nondependent women.

“This study found that chronic marijuana use in adolescence was negatively associated with achieving important developmental milestones in young adulthood,” Elizabeth Harari, a UConn Health psychiatry resident and author of the study, told UConn Today.

For complete article

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Oct 29, 2017

U.S. beer-industry executives have been debating whether legalized marijuana could cannibalize sales of beer. The U.S. distributor of Corona beer is chasing a new type of buzz.

Constellation Brands Inc. STZ, -1.41%   has agreed to take a 9.9% stake in Canopy Growth Corp., a Canadian marijuana company, and plans to work with the grower to develop and market cannabis-infused beverages. 

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José Laganière | VAT News| Published October 25, 2017 

Even though she is now 17, Jessika already knows the serious repercussions that drug and alcohol use can have on a life. She says legalizing marijuana in Canada is a big mistake.

The last few years have not been easy for Jessika. After smoking her first pot joint when she was only 11, she then fell into alcohol and other harder drugs. Powerless, her parents witnessed this drift until a six-month therapy at the Portage Center finally came back on track.

With the forthcoming legalization of marijuana, Jessika and her mother are extremely worried about the harmful effects of this measure. "I saw lots of people scrap, people in psychosis, I saw all the colors and all the people who consumed with me started with pot and then switch to other drugs" , she told TVA News.

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Published 17 October 2017

 THC restricts synaptic recovery

In their experiments, the researchers injected THC into the young mice, focusing on its effect on the GABA cells in the VTA. The team noted that just one THC injection did not have a significant impact on the functioning of GABA cells. But administering multiple injections — one injection of THC per day for 7 to 10 consecutive days — blocked a function called "synaptic recovery" in the GABA cells of the mice's brains.

Dr. Edwards explained to MNT that "all psychoactive substances that alter synaptic plasticity [...] of VTA dopamine cells, even once the drug is out of the system, are addictive, while non-addictive psychoactive substances do not alter plasticity. Therefore, we attempted chronic THC injections and noted that synaptic plasticity (long-term depression) was occluded."

The cumulative effect of repeated THC absorption in the brains of the young mice was to impact how GABA nerve cells normally function, leading to a dysregulation of dopamine levels.
Since dopamine "motivates" us to keep engaging in certain behaviors — such as eating or sexual intercourse — by rendering them pleasurable, if this neurotransmitter is not properly regulated, it could lead to addiction.

'Negative impact of THC on adolescents'

This could explain why marijuana use disorder is so common among consumers in the U.S., where almost 6 million people experienced it in 2016 alone, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Dr. Edwards explained that he saw clinical potential in the study's findings, and he said that his team's reasearch could offer new insight into mechanisms of addiction and withdrawal.

"It is important to note," he explained, "that these studies were carried out in juvenile/adolescent aged mice. This is important as adolescent humans have worse THC-induced outcomes compared to adults."

"[A]dolescents who use THC have decreased IQ, decreased cognition, and increased change of further drug abuse with other drugs," he said

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Survey shows marijuana use disorder linked to substance use/mental disorders and disability.

 Marijuana use disorder is common in the United States, is often associated with other substance use disorders, behavioral problems, and disability, and goes largely untreated, according to a new study conducted by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health. The analysis found that 2.5 percent of adults — nearly 6 million people — experienced marijuana use disorder in the past year, while 6.3 percent had met the diagnostic criteria for the disorder at some point in their lives. A report of the study, led by Bridget Grant, Ph.D., of the NIAAA Laboratory of Epidemiology and Biometry, appears online today in the American Journal of Psychiatry.

“...Marijuana use can lead to harmful consequences for individuals and society.”

George F. Koob, Ph.D., Director, NIAAA

For complete article

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