Module 12: Marijuana, Hallucinogens, Inhalants, and Steroids

Module 12: Key Terms

anabolic steroids: synthesized substances that mimic testosterone, the naturally occurring male sex hormone; sometimes referred to as anabolic-androgenic steroids because they have the effect of producing masculinization (androgenic) of features and body functions.

anandamide: the naturally occurring brain chemical (endogenous) that functions as a neurotransmitter and is similar in structure to THC (cannabinoids).

cannabinoids: the group of chemicals in marijuana (or synthesized) found in the cannabis (marijuana) plant, as well as those which are endogenous (see anandamide).

cross-tolerance: when tolerance developed to one substance is also expressed toward other, chemically similar substances even though the other substance has never been used.

dissociatives: substances that alter the conscious mind, causing an individual to experience distorted perceptions (sight and sound) and a feeling of detachment (dissociation) from self, body, and environment; may also cause hallucinations.

hallucinogens: a type of synthetic or naturally occurring substance that causes significant distortions in a person’s perceptions of reality (usually visual and/or auditory), perception of what is not really present or what actually is present as being very different in nature; mimicry of psychotic states.

inhalants: substances that produce chemical vapors (volatile substances) and that cause psychotropic effects when inhaled by nose or mouth; many are highly toxic to the brain and other organ systems, as well; many are common household or workplace products.

marijuana: in the class of cannabinol substances with the active ingredient being THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol).

THC: is short for the chemical delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, a major active ingredient contributing to the psychoactive effects of cannabis (marijuana) by attaching to cannabinoid receptors in the brain.


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Theories and Biological Basis of Addiction Copyright © by Audrey Begun is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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