Marijuana and ethanol: Differential effects on time perception, heart rate, and subjective response

Abstract

Performance on a time production task, heart rate, and subjective responses were studied in twelve male subjects given oral doses of marijuana (0.7 mg of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol/kg), ethanol (1.0 ml/kg), and placebo, on three testing days which were each separated by 1 week. Orders were balanced across subjects and testing conditions were doubleblind. Compared to ethanol and placebo, marijuana induced a significant under-production of time intervals, suggesting an acceleration of the internal rate of time perception. The onset of this acceleration of time sense in which geophysical time seemed to pass slowly corresponded with the characteristic increase in heart rate and the onset of the subjective feelings of drug effects. Initial phases of alcohol intoxication were associated with the opposite effects on the time production task. These findings replicate previous work and indicate that an easily administered time production task provides a consistent, non-motor measure of acute marijuana intoxication and also reflects ethanol intoxication.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

References

  1. Beaconsfield, P., Ginsburg, J., Rainsbury, R.: Marihuana smoking, cardiovascular effects in man and possible mechanisms. new Engl. J. Med. 287, 209–212 (1972)

    Google Scholar 

  2. Bech, P., Rafaelson, L., Rafaelson, O. J.: Cannabis and alcohol: effects on estimation of time and distance. Psychopharmacologia (Berl.) 32, 373–381 (1973)

    Google Scholar 

  3. Cappell, H., Webster, C. D., Herring, B. S., Ginsberg, R.: Alcohol and marijuana: A comparison of effects on a temporally controlled operant in humans. J. Pharmacol. exp. Ther. 182, 195–203 (1972)

    Google Scholar 

  4. Carlini, E. A., Karniol, I. G., Renault, P. F., Schuster, C. R.: Effects of marihuana in laboratory animals and in man. Brit. J. Pharmacol. 50, 299–309 (1974)

    Google Scholar 

  5. Clark, L. D., Hughes, R., Nakashima, E. N.: Behavioral effects of marihuana. Arch. gen. Psychiat. 23, 193–198 (1970)

    Google Scholar 

  6. Clausen, J.: An evaluation of experimental methods of time judgment. J. exp. Psychol. 40, 756–761 (1950)

    Google Scholar 

  7. Dornbush, R. L., Fink, M., Freedman, A. M.: Marijuana, memory and perception. Amer. J. Psychiat. 128, 194–197 (1971)

    Google Scholar 

  8. Fischer, R.: The biological fabric of time. In: Interdisciplinary perspectives of time. Ann. N. Y. Sci. 138, Article 2 (1967)

  9. Frankenhaeuser, M.: Estimation of time, an experimental study. Stockholm: Almqvist and Wiksell 1959

    Google Scholar 

  10. Goldstone, S., Boardman, W. K., Lhamon, W. T.: Effect of quinal barbitone, dextroamphetamine, and placebo on apparent time. Brit. J. Psychiat. 49, 324 (1958)

    Google Scholar 

  11. Hollister, L. E., Gillespie, H. K.: Marijuana, ethanol and dextroamphetamine: Mood and mental function alterations. Arch. gen. Psychiat. 23, 199–203 (1970)

    Google Scholar 

  12. Hollister, L. E., Tinklenberg, J. R.: Subchronic oral dose of marijuana extract. Psychopharmacologia (Berl.) 29, 247–252 (1973)

    Google Scholar 

  13. Isbell, H., Gorodetzsky, C. W., Jasinski, D., Claussen, U., Spulak, F. V., Korte, F.: Effects of (−)Δ9, Transtetrahydrocannabinol in man. Psychopharmacologia (Berl.) 11, 184–188 (1967)

    Google Scholar 

  14. Jones, R. T., Stone, G. C.: Psychological studies of marijuana and alcohol in man. Psychopharmacologia (Berl.) 18, 108–117 (1970)

    Google Scholar 

  15. Kiplinger, G. F., Manno, J. E., Rodda, B. E., Forney, R. B.: Dose-response analysis of the effects of tetrahydrocannabinol in man. Clin. Pharmacol. Ther. 12, 650–657 (1971)

    Google Scholar 

  16. Kopell, B. S., Wittner, W. K., Lunde, D., Warrick, G., Edwards, D.: Cortisol effects on averaged evoked potential, alpha-rhythm, time estimation, and two-flash fusion threshold. Psychosom. Med. 32, 39–49 (1970)

    Google Scholar 

  17. Kopell et al., in preparation: Time action effects of marijuana and alcohol on event related potentials in man.

  18. Melges, F. T., Tinklenberg, J. R., Deardorff, C. M., Davies, N. H., Anderson, R. E., Owen, C. A.: Temporal disorganization and delusional-like ideation. Arch. gen. Psychiat. 30, 855–861 (1974)

    Google Scholar 

  19. Melges, F. T., Tinklenberg, J. R., Hollister, L. E., Gillespie, H. K.: Marijuana and temporal disintegration. Science 168, 1118–1120 (1970a)

    Google Scholar 

  20. Melges, F. T., Tinklenberg, J. R., Hollister, L. E., Gillespie, H. K.: Temporal disintegration and depersonalization during marijuana intoxication. Arch. gen. Psychiat. 23, 204–210 (1970b)

    Google Scholar 

  21. Melges, F. T., Tinklenberg, J. R., Hollister, L. E., Gillespie, H. K.: Marijuana and the temporal span of awareness. Arch. gen. Psychiat. 24, 564–567 (1971)

    Google Scholar 

  22. Meyer, R. E., Pillard, R. C., Shapiro, L. M., Mirin, S. M.: Administration of marijuana to heavy and casual marijuana users. Amer. J. Psychiat. 128, 198–204 (1971)

    Google Scholar 

  23. Ornstein, R. E.: On the experience of time. Baltimore: Penguin Books 1969

    Google Scholar 

  24. Robson, J. G., Burns, B. D., Welt, P. J. L.: The effect of inhaling diluted nitrous oxide. Canad. Anaesth. Soc. J 7, 399–410 (1960)

    Google Scholar 

  25. Roth, W. T., Kopell, B. S., Tinklenberg, J. R., Huntsberger, G. E., Kraemer, H. C.: Reliability of the contingent negative variation and the auditory evoked potential. Electroenceph. clin. Neurophysiol. 38, 45–50 (1975)

    Google Scholar 

  26. Rossi, A. M., O'Brien, J.: Memory and time estimation. In: The use of marijuana, J. H. Mendelson, A. M. Rossi, and R. E. Meyer, eds. New York: Plenum Press 1974

    Google Scholar 

  27. Rutschmann, J., Rubinstein, L.: Time estimation, knowledge of results, and drug effects. Psychiat. Res. 4, 107–114 (1966)

    Google Scholar 

  28. Tinklenberg, J. R., Darley, C. F.: Psychological and cognitive effects of cannabis. In: Cannabis and man: Psychological and clinical aspects and patterns of use, P. H. Connell and N. Dorn, eds, New York:Churchill, Livingstone 1975

    Google Scholar 

  29. Tinklenberg, J. R., Darley, C. F.: A model of marijuana's cognitive effects. In: Pharmacology of marijuana, M. C. Braude and S. Szara, eds. New York: Raven Press (1976)

    Google Scholar 

  30. Tinklenberg, J. R., Kopell, B. S., Melges, F. T., Hollister, L. E.: Marijuana and alcohol: time production and memory function. Arch. gen. Psychiat. 27, 812–815 (1972)

    Google Scholar 

  31. Vachon, L., Sulkowski, A., Rich, E.: Marihuana effects on learning, attention, and time estimation. Psychopharmacologia (Berl.) 39, 1–11 (1974)

    Google Scholar 

  32. Weil, A. T., Zinberg, N. E., Nelson, J. M.: Clinical and psychological effects of marihuana in man. Science 162, 1234–1242 (1968)

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Tinklenberg, J.R., Roth, W.T. & Kopell, B.S. Marijuana and ethanol: Differential effects on time perception, heart rate, and subjective response. Psychopharmacology 49, 275–279 (1976). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00426830

Download citation

Key words

  • Time production
  • Time perception
  • Marijuana
  • Ethanol
  • Heart rate