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Relationships of Cannabis Policy Liberalization With Alcohol Use and Co-Use With Cannabis: A Narrative Review

Introduction

For the past 25 years, a growing number of U.S. states have been progressively legalizing cannabis markets, first through the early adoption of medical cannabis laws, which enabled the purchase and possession of cannabis for specific medicinal purposes, and then more recently through laws regarding adult (i.e., “recreational”) use of cannabis. As of May 2021, more than 70% of U.S...

Simultaneous Alcohol and Marijuana Use Among Young Adults: A Scoping Review of Prevalence, Patterns, Psychosocial Correlates, and Consequences

Introduction

Alcohol and marijuana are two of the most commonly used substances among young adults in the United States. In the past year, approximately 82% of young adults ages 19 to 30 reported alcohol use and 42% reported marijuana use.1 Independently, these two substances are associated with numerous short- and long-term risks and harms.2-5 Those who use both alcohol and marijuana, and in...

Alcohol and Cannabis Use and the Developing Brain

Introduction

Adolescence is marked by significant social, emotional, cognitive, and physical changes, as individuals transition from childhood to adulthood. Although the exact definition of adolescence tends to vary, recent findings regarding adolescent development and growth include individuals between the ages of 10 and 24.1 Consistent with this defined age range, the human brain continues to...

Maternal Substance Use: Consequences, Identification, and Interventions

Alcohol, tobacco, and cannabis are the substances most frequently used during pregnancy, and opioid-exposed pregnancies have increased fourfold. The purpose of this review is to describe the prevalence and consequences of prenatal exposure to alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, and opioids. Currently available screening questionnaires for prenatal substance use are summarized and contrasted with the...

Hepatic Cannabinoid Signaling in the Regulation of Alcohol-Associated Liver Disease

Introduction

The prevalence of alcohol use disorder has been steadily rising around the world in recent years, and reducing the burden of alcohol-associated liver disease (ALD) caused by chronic alcohol consumption has become one of the most important global health issues.1,2 Excessive alcohol drinking (more than 40 g of pure alcohol per day) is closely associated with increased risk of all...

Patterns of Cannabis and Alcohol Co-Use: Substitution Versus Complementary Effects

Introduction

Use of alcohol and related problems cause significant global and individual health-related harms, and alcohol use is currently the third-leading cause of preventable death in the United States.1,2 Alcohol and cannabis are among the most commonly used psychoactive substances in the United States.3 Although concurrent use of alcohol and cannabis (i.e., co-use: defined as using both...

Alcohol and the Adolescent Brain: What We’ve Learned and Where the Data Are Taking Us

Introduction

The past 50 years of research supported by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) have resulted in an accumulation of invaluable data to address the multifaceted problems surrounding underage drinking. Youth use of alcohol remains a pervasive social and public health concern in the United States and a leading cause of disability and mortality during...

Alcohol and Cannabinoids - From the Editors

Alcohol is frequently used in association with cannabis, with co-use now perceived as normative with expanding cannabis legalization. Cannabinoid products are increasingly used for a number of medical and recreational purposes, including to enhance alcohol-reinforcing properties or in some cases to substitute for alcohol. Rates of alcohol use disorder (AUD) are higher among cannabis users relative...

The Synaptic Interactions of Alcohol and the Endogenous Cannabinoid System

Introduction

Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a chronic, relapsing brain disorder, characterized by a compromised ability to control alcohol use despite adverse occupational, social, or health consequences. Results from a 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that 5% of individuals over age 12 had AUD, affecting 14.5 million people in the United States. Alcohol and cannabis products...

Alcohol-Endocannabinoid Interactions: Implications for Addiction-Related Behavioral Processes

Introduction

Endogenous cannabinoids, or endocannabinoids (eCBs), are bioactive lipid molecules that modulate signaling activity of several physiological processes involved in pain, appetite, energy balance, stress/anxiety, immune signaling, and learning and memory. Although understanding of the eCB system has grown in complexity since its discovery by Raphael Mechoulam, it is now widely known...