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Cannabis use in young people: The risk for schizophrenia

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature review

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1779 - 1787
Number of pages9
JournalNeuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011

King's Authors


Cannabis is one of the most commonly used illicit drugs, and despite the widely held belief that it is a safe drug, its long-term use has potentially harmful consequences. To date, the research on the impact of its use has largely been epidemiological in nature and has consistently found that cannabis use is associated with schizophrenia outcomes later in life, even after controlling for several confounding factors. While the majority of users can continue their use without adverse effects, it is clear from studies of psychosis that some individuals are more vulnerable to its effects than others. In addiction, evidence from both epidemiological and animal studies indicates that cannabis use during adolescence carries particular risk. Further studies are warranted given the increase in the concentration of the main active ingredient (Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol) in street preparations of cannabis and a decreasing age of first-time exposure to cannabis. (c) 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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