HEADLINES Published January20, 2016 By Beatrice Asuncion

Research Debunks Theory That Marijuana Causes a Drop in IQ for Teens

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(Photo : Getty Images - Christopher Furlong)

For decades, it has been a popular notion that marijuana use in adolescents may cause stunting in brain development. With the legalization of the drug however, new studies have been implemented in order to verify previous claims. Recently, one such research has presented their findings. To say that the results are controversial is nothing but an understatement.

Last January 18, 2016, the marijuana study was released by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Joshua Isen and the rest of the scientists behind the paper conducted the research on 3066 participants. The subjects were tested when they were between the ages 9 to 12 and then again at ages 17 to 20 - after they have begun using marijuana. The researchers tracked the test scores of both marijuana users and non-users over the course of time and according to their findings there is no significant difference between the IQs of those who have used marijuana and those who have not.

The study also followed 789 pairs of adolescent twins from Los Angeles and Minnesota. The study started when the participants were between the ages of 9 to 11. Over the course of 10 years, the researchers conducted intelligence tests and confidential surveys delving on not only marijuana use but also painkillers, cocaine and binge drinking.

The Marijuana users scored four less points over the decade long study. Surprisingly, their twins who have abstained from pot use also exhibited a decline in the intelligence quotient. The research concludes that a pattern of decline is indeed substantial in today's youth however there is a reason behind it other than marijuana usage.

"Our findings lead us to believe that this 'something else' is related to something about the shared environment of the twins, which would include home, school, and peers" quipped Nicholas Jackson, a scientist also behind the recently published study.

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