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New Study Says Marijuana Affects People Differently, Including the Ability to Drive

A new study in Colorado is attempting to figure out how to best figure out the different ways marijuana affects people.

Dr. Michael Kosnett at the University of Colorado is conducting a study to figure out how cannabis affects different people, primarily with driving. Kosnett notes that depending on how often you use cannabis, you develop a different tolerance for it. And therefore the effects of marijuana will differ depending on each individual's tolerance of the drug.

"It is known that people develop a tolerance to the psychoactive effects of cannabis when they use it on a regular basis. There’s evidence of tolerance," Kosnett said. "One of the issues, for example, in driving is the level of cannabis or the amount of cannabis that a person uses, how that impacts them. There are some people, for example, who smoke cannabis regularly who have elevated levels long after the psychoactive effects."

Kosnett's study will examine how marijuana use affects people's ability to drive. He's found subjects of various cannabis tolerance from everyday users to occasional users to people who've never used marijuana. They go through a driving simulator, and then they will get a 15 minute break to either use marijuana or not depending on what group they're in, and then they will re-take the test. The study will also test reaction time and other skills related to driving.

The study is meant to help figure out a test for police officers to use in the future to help determine whether or not someone is too high to drive. This is an issue that's commonly cited by anti-marijuana politicians for why they cannot support legalization, so creating a foolproof roadside cannabis test could help speed up the legalization process.

(h/t Colorado Public Radio


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