Reciprocal Influences of HIV and Cannabinoids on the Brain and Cognitive Function.

Journal Article (Review;Journal Article)

Globally, cannabis is the most commonly used illicit drug, with disproportionately high use among persons with HIV. Despite advances in HIV care, nearly half of persons living with HIV continue to experience neurocognitive deficits or impairments that may have negative impacts on their daily function. Chronic cannabis use may play a role in the development or exacerbation of these impairments. Here we present a review summarizing existing research detailing the effect of cannabis use associated with the neuropathogenesis of HIV. We examine evidence for possible additive or synergistic effects of HIV infection and cannabis use on neuroHIV in both the preclinical and adult human literatures, including in vitro studies, animal models, clinical neuroimaging research, and studies examining the cognitive effects of cannabis. We discuss the limitations of existing research, including methodological challenges involved with clinical research with human subjects. We identify gaps in the field and propose critical research questions to advance our understanding of how cannabis use affects neuroHIV. Graphical Abstract.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Towe, SL; Meade, CS; Cloak, CC; Bell, RP; Baptiste, J; Chang, L

Published Date

  • December 2020

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 15 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 765 - 779

PubMed ID

  • 32445005

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7680275

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1557-1904

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1557-1890

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s11481-020-09921-y


  • eng