CHARLES KANAKIS, MD.; J. MAURICE POUGET, M.D.; KENNETH M. ROSEN, M.D.
We have previously reported that 25 µg/kg of intravenous (i.v.) delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ-9-THC) produces marked increases in heart rate, prolongation of left ventricular ejection time corrected for heart rate (LVETc), and a shortening of the pre-ejection period in normal volunteers. Beta-adrenergic blockade partially attenuates these responses. To elucidate further the mechanism of action of Δ-9-THC, we gave 10 normal volunteers 0.1 mg/ kg of i.v. propranolol and 2 mg of i.v. atropine before they received 25 µg/kg of i.v. Δ-9-THC. Systolic time intervals were compared in the denervated subjects before and after Δ-9-THC. Post Δ-9-THC responses were measured at a time approximating peak psychologic high. Mean ± SEM heart rate before and after Δ-9-THC was 89 ±4 and 87 ± 3 beats/min (NS); mean ± SEM pre-ejection period before and after Δ-9-THC was 107 ± 5 and 109 ± 4 ms (NS); and mean ± SEM LVETC before and after Δ-9-THC was 433 ±6 and 429 ± 6 ms (NS). Since previous denervation of our subjects with atropine and propranaolol totally abolished changes in heart rate and systolic time intervals, the cardiac effects of Δ-9-THC appear to be mediated totally via the autonomic nervous system, probably reflecting direct central nervous system stimulation.
CHARLES KANAKIS, J. MAURICE POUGET, KENNETH M. ROSEN. Lack of Cardiovascular Effects of Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol in Chemically Denervated Men. Ann Intern Med. 1979;91:571–574. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-91-4-571
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1979;91(4):571-574.
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