Molecule discovered that protects the brain from cannabis intoxication: It is called pregnenolone. It is a steroid hormone produced by the body. In 2014, it was discovered that pregnenolone, a molecule produced by the brain, acts as a natural defence mechanism against the harmful effects of cannabis in animals. Pregnenolone prevents THC, the main active principle in cannabis, from fully activating its brain receptor, the CB1 receptor, that when overstimulated by THC causes the intoxicating effects of cannabis. Essentially, when high doses of THC (well above those inhaled by regular users) activate the CB1 cannabinoid receptor they also trigger the synthesis of pregnenolone. Pregnenole then binds to a specific site on the same CB1 receptors (see figure) and reducing the effects of THC. The administration of pregnenolone at doses that increase the brain’s level of this hormone even more, antagonize the behavioral effects of cannabis. At the neurobiological level, pregnenolone greatly reduces the release of dopamine triggered by THC. This is an important effect, since the addictive effects of drugs involve an excessive release of dopamine. In a conversation it was hypothesized that the cases of schizophrenic psychosis from cannabis reported by researchers may be from consumers with low pregnenolone levels. It has been found in some studies “schizophrenics” are low in the hormone pregnenolone and report anxiety. Maybe it’s not cannabis that makes people psychotic?