Story by: FOX News
New research shows teenagers who smoke marijuana are not only affecting themselves, but possibly children they may have years down the road.
Dr. Yasmin Hurd, with Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, is an expert on the effects of marijuana on the brain conducts studies that mimic human response on mice. She gave adolescent rats the equivalent of eight joints in a month. It was enough to make permanent changes in their brains that were passed on to their offspring. When those offspring grew up, many showed compulsive behavior and a strong appetite for heroin.
“It’s not that marijuana changes your DNA sequence, but we know that it changes, potentially, how your DNA is marked that changes how the genes are expressed in the brain. But, we definitely see clear brain differences in these adults’ offspring,” says Dr. Hurd.
Advocates for marijuana legalization acknowledge addiction is a problem for some people that could be passed down through the generations.
They insist overall, marijuana is relatively safe and less addictive than alcohol.