Tom Stoelers¹, Roy Nicolás Álvarez-Garrido ¹ , Raúl Navas-Rutete ¹ , Elena Rosado-Gutiérrez ¹ , Cristina De-Luis-Pareja ¹ , Natalia Astasio-García ¹
¹Estudiante del Grado en Medicina de la Universidad de Granada (UGR)
Esperanza González-Moreno ² , Antonio Hermán-Carvajal ² , Miguel Sillero-Romero ² , Claudia Carrasco-Barrios ² , Elena Ruiz-López-Ocón ² , Celia Fernández-Gamarra ²
2 Student of the BA in Translation and Interpreting at the University of Granada (UGR)
Introduction: Schizophrenia is a psychiatric disorder that could be related to cannabis use.
Pathogenic relationship between cannabis and schizophrenia: Environmental and biological factors are involved. The physiopathology of schizophrenia is characterized by physiological and anatomic alterations of the central nervous system. Cannabis alters the central nervous system, the immune system, and other tissues. Factors involved in the relationship between cannabinoids and schizophrenia: The mutation in the gene that encodes neuregulin-1 could be related to a higher sensitivity to the sedative effects of cannabinoids and to the development of extreme anxiety induced by stress. Consequently, this could represent a potential risk factor. Another potential risk factor is the presence of adverse life events, such as experiencing a breakup during adolescence or even belonging to a dysfunctional family. Furthermore, having a lower socioeconomic status could be related to a higher frequency of drug abuse. Discussion: According to the evidence shown in some cohort studies, cannabis use increases the possibility of experiencing psychotic symptoms. In addition, it has been observed that those who suffer from non-psychotic psychiatric diseases are not appropriate for studies on cannabis studies and its relationship with a potential development of schizophrenia. A potential source of bias in these types of research studies is the use of non-anonymous and self-administered use questionnaires. Some confusing factors to consider when analyzing the potential relationship between schizophrenia and cannabis use are socioeconomic aspects, psychological aspects, sex, age and the ethnic group of the individuals. Conclusion: It seems that there is enough evidence of the causal relationship between cannabis and schizophrenia. However, it would be necessary to study how to avoid the development of this disorder in a sample of at least 1300 individuals at risk of suffering from schizophrenia induced by cannabis. It is possible to conclude from this review that there is a causal relationship between cannabis use and the development or worsening of schizophrenia.
Keywords: schizophrenia, cannabis, neuregulin-1, stress, risk factor, adolescence, adverse life events.