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Centre de recherche
Thursday, November 26 2020

The Canadian Cannabis and Psychosis Research Team obtained a Team Grant from the CIHR and the Mental Health Commission of Canada

MONTREAL, November 26, 2020 – A Cannabis Research in Priority Team Grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Mental Health Commission of Canada was granted to Université de Montreal Professor and CHU Sainte-Justine researcher, Dr. Patricia Conrod, to establish The Canadian Cannabis and Psychosis Research Team.

While Cannabis is considered a relatively safe psychoactive substance, cannabis-related psychosis risk is a significant public health concern, for which no evidence-based screening or intervention strategies exist.

Psychosis often follows heavy cannabis use, particularly if use starts early and is sustained during adolescence. Research also suggests that some individuals, those with genetic and psychosocial risk markers, are more susceptible to cannabis-induced psychosis.

“What is not known is how to identify and protect individuals at risk of cannabis-related psychosis from such harm,” explains Patricia Conrod, researcher at CHU Sainte-Justine and professor at the Université de Montréal.

The current team joins genetics experts with clinical and preclinical researchers to optimise their research on the neurodevelopmental consequences of adolescent cannabis exposure to answer the following questions in relation to psychosis: What features of cannabis exposure are more or less harmful? Do reliable biomarkers exist that will predict who is most at risk? Is there a role for targeted or early intervention strategies to reduce the cognitive and mental health burden of cannabis? What are the most promising intervention approaches to reduce cannabis-related psychosis?

The research team will collaborate on an integrated research program that spans preclinical studies, genetics studies, longitudinal developmental and clinical cohorts, big-data analytics and prevention.

The consortium involves researchers from Université de Montreal., McGill University, Dalhousie University, Sickkids Hospital/University of Toronto and the Canadian Consortium on Early Intervention on Psychosis (CCEIP).

All participants will mutually benefit from data-pooling activities and a translational research framework, resulting in exceptional data output and knowledge for the public.

The databases and knowledge generated by this team will be of high value to the clinical networks represented within the team (e.g., CCEIP), who currently seek guidance on how to manage potential cognitive and mental health consequences of cannabis use in their patients.

About the CHU Sainte-Justine Research Centre

CHU Sainte-Justine Research Cente is a leading mother-child research institution affiliated with Université de Montréal. It brings together more than 210 research investigators, including over 110 clinician-scientists, as well as 450 graduate and postgraduate students focused on finding innovative prevention means, faster and less invasive treatments, as well as personalized approaches to medicine. The Centre is part of CHU Sainte-Justine, which is the largest mother-child centre in Canada and second pediatric centre in North America. More on research.chusj.org

Source
CHU Sainte-Justine
Contact

Source:

Maude Hoffmann
Communications, CHU Sainte-Justine Research Centre
maude.hoffmann.hsj@ssss.gouv.qc.ca

Media contact:

Florence Meney
Executive advisor – External communications
CHU Sainte-Justine
Tel.: 514-755-2516
florence.meney.hsj@ssss.gouv.qc.ca  

Persons mentioned in the text
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Updated on 11/27/2020
Created on 11/27/2020
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