Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) was shown to exert either neuroprotective or neurotoxic effects. Based on our in vitro studies and on pharmacokinetic considerations, we have recently presented a hypothesis that explains this dual activity of THC. This explanation is based on the assumption that extremely low doses of cannabinoids are neurotoxic. The present study verifies this assumption and shows that a single injection of 0.001 mg/kg THC (3-4 orders of magnitude lower than conventional doses) significantly affected the performance of mice in the Morris water maze test 3 weeks later. The THC-injected mice showed both longer escape latencies and lower scores in the probe tests compared to their matched controls, indicating the induction of cognitive deficits.
- Morris water maze