Cannabis Use Research Study

Researchers at Hartford HealthCare are partnering with older adults to investigate how THC, a compound in cannabis, affects memory and learning. Join our compensated study today!

Fast Facts

Smoked or Vaped Cannabis in the last two years

60-75 years old

Compensation Provided

Conducted in Hartford, CT

Study Background

This pilot study is focused on examining how THC, a component of cannabis, influences memory and learning abilities in older adults.

It involves two separate sessions for each participant, where they are administered either THC or a placebo in a controlled and double-blind fashion. The study uses MRI scans to investigate the specific brain circuits involved in various memory-related tasks and how THC disrupts them. The goal is to gain a more detailed understanding of how cannabis affects different aspects of memory across the lifespan.

Your participation in this study may help researchers better understand the health effects of cannabis. Further research today and join our compensated study!

Additional Information

The purpose of this study is to examine cannabis’s differential effects on the neural circuit underpinnings in various cognitive domains across the lifespan in much more detail.

You may qualify for this study if you meet the following criteria.

Inclusion Criteria:

  • 60-75 years old
  • Smoked or vaped cannabis within past 2 years and felt “high” when used
  • Able to read, speak, and understand English
  • Able and willing to provide written informed consent, and willing to commit to the study protocol

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Current marijuana tolerance, desire to cut down, or cravings to use during periods of abstinence.
  • Positive screen for drug or alcohol (except cannabis) on test day will result in rescheduling the appointment
  • History of adverse effects with cannabis
  • Cannabis users who are abstaining
  • Inability to comprehend written instructions using the WRAT 4 reading achievement test
  • Pregnant, breastfeeding, and ineffective birth control methods.
  • Unable or unsafe to have an MRI
  • Serious medical, neuro-ophthalmological, or neurological illness (e.g. cancer, seizure disorders, encephalopathy
  • History of head trauma with loss of consciousness > 30 minutes or concussion lasting 30 days.
  • Current Major Depressive Episode
  • Focal brain lesion seen on structural MRI
  • Any medical/neurological condition that could compromise neurocognitive performance (e.g. epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, fetal alcohol syndrome)

Once you are enrolled, the study involves:

  • 3 in-person visits each lasting approximately 6 hours:

    • Visit 1 is a Screening Visit: consent, psychiatric/medical history, cognitive testing, and demographics

    • Visits 2 and 3 are MRI Study Visits: participant receives either THC or placebo

Participants may be compensated up to $360 for their participation. Participants will also be able to take home a copy of their MRI brain images on CD.

There is no cost for you to participate in the study.