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Familial factors may not explain the effect of moderate-to-heavy cannabis use on cognitive functioning in adolescents: a sibling-comparison study

9/3/20--This study aims to examine whether moderate adolescent cannabis use has neurocognitive effects that are unexplained by familial confounds, which prior family‐controlled studies may not have identified. Results indicate that moderate adolescent cannabis use may have adverse effects on cognitive functioning, specifically verbal memory, that cannot be explained by familial factors. Read

Assessing the public health impacts of legalizing recreational cannabis use: the US experience

5/11/20--Wayne Hall Michael Lynskey review US research on the effects of legalization on cannabis use among adults and adolescents and on cannabis‐related harms; the impact of legalizing adult recreational use on cannabis price, availability, potency and use; and regulatory policies that may increase or limit adverse effects of legalization. Read

Considering the health and social welfare impacts of non‐medical cannabis legalization

5/11/20--Hall and Lynskey review the state of knowledge to date regarding cannabis le­galization's impact on public health out­comes. As they correctly observe, the cur­rent (mostly North America‐based) evi­dence base re­garding the impacts of legalization is limit­ed, and mixed, including heterogeneous ef­fects on cannabis use and related harms. Read

To legalize or not to legalize cannabis, that is the question!

5/11/20--Hall and Lynskey highlight that two of the key arguments of the legalization lobby are: a) that it will reduce adolescent access, and b) that the available cannabis will be ­safer and less potent because of state‐con­trolled levels of its active ingredient, tetra­hydrocannabinol (THC). They also give a comprehensive snapshot of the outcomes that have followed the changes in cannabis law since 2012 in the US. Read

Recreational cannabis legalization presents an opportunity to reduce the harms of the US medical cannabis industry

5/11/20--According to a published commentary by Keith Humphreys Chelsea L. Shover, Hall and Lynskey's masterful essay provides a comprehensive assessment of the public health consequences of recreational cannabis legalization, which wise policy‐makers will consider as they design regulatory systems. They urge US policy‐makers to recognize that recreational cannabis legalization changes the political environment in a way that creates an important public health opportunity: cleaning up the under‐regulated and frequently harmful US medical cannabis industry. Read

Cannabis and public health: a global experiment without control

5/11/20--According to a review by Hall and Lynskey, two seemingly easy indicators may be prevalence and patterns of canna­bis use as far as the public health effects of le­galization, as both are potentially linked to health and social problems in the presence or absence of legalization. Read

Being thoughtful about cannabis legalization and social equity

5/11/20--According to a commentary published by Wiley Online Library by Beau Kilmer and Erin Kilmer Neel, Hall and Lynskey highlight several out­comes featured in cannabis policy debates and correctly note that they will be shaped by the type of legalization that is imple­mented. Kilmer and Neel mention how excellent the review of the e­merging evidence about how the commercial ap­proach influences health outcomes will hopefully inform future debates in the US and elsewhere. Read

The effects of recreational cannabis legalization might depend upon the policy model

5/11/20--Based on a published commentary written by Rosario Queirolo via the Wiley Online Library, the features of each legalization policy model might have a different impact on the expected outcomes. Some regulatory policies might increase certain legalization adverse effects, while decreasing other neg­ative impacts. For example, the Uruguayan cannabis legislation forbids the selling of cannabis edibles, which might reduce intoxications among minors but increases the percentage of users that smoke cannabis. Read

Legalizing recreational cannabis use: a promising journey into the unknown

5/11/20--An overview of the public health consequences of legalizing recreational cannabis use is provided by Hall and Lynskey. With this legalization, some US states have become frontrunners in international cannabis policy. Research‐wise and policy‐wise, there are two main issues, i.e. how legalization affects cannabis use and how cannabis use affects health. Apparently, there are quite a few uncertainties regarding both is­sues. Read

Assessing the public health effects of cannabis use: can legalization improve the evidence base?

5/11/20--Hall and Lynskey reviewed evidence on the effects of legalization of recreational cannabis, and they concluded that it is too early to tell. So, what matters going forwards is whether there will be sufficient investment in generating evidence and conducting research into both the association of cannabis use with health and social harms and the impact of alternative methods of legislating cannabis consumption on the prevention of those harms. Read

Using contributing causes of death improves prediction of opioid involvement in unclassified drug overdoses in US death records

2/27/20--This study aimed to compare methodological approaches to predicting opioid involvement in unclassified drug overdoses in US death records and to estimate the number of fatal opioid overdoses from 1999 to 2016 using the best‐performing method. Results indicate that in modeling opioid involvement in unclassified drug overdoses, highest predictive accuracy is achieved using a statistical model—either logistic regression or a random forest ensemble—with decedent characteristics and contributing causes of death as predictors. Read

Interactive effects of PTSD and substance use on suicidal ideation and behavior in military personnel

9/2/19--Results from a study examining the unique and interactive effects of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and days using alcohol, opioids, and marijuana on PTSD symptoms, suicidal ideation, and suicidal behavior indicate suggest marijuana, especially for military personnel experiencing elevated PTSD symptoms may negatively impact suicidal thoughts and behavior. These results are relevant to suggestions that medical marijuana could be used in treating or augmenting treatment for PTSD. Read