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Nat Rev Neurosci. 2007 Nov;8(11):885-95.

Cannabis, the mind and society: the hash realities.

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  • 1Institute of Psychiatry, Psychological Medicine, De Crespigny Park, Denmark Hill, London, SE5 8AF, UK.


Cannabis has been known for at least 4,000 years to have profound effects on the mind--effects that have provoked dramatically divergent attitudes towards it. Some societies have regarded cannabis as a sacred boon for mankind that offers respite from the tribulations of everyday life, whereas others have demonized it as inevitably leading to 'reefer madness'. The debate between the protagonists and prohibitionists has recently been re-ignited, but unfortunately this debate continues mainly in ignorance of our new understanding of the effects of cannabis on the brain and of studies that have quantified the extent of the risks of long-term use.

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