Environmental Epigenetics, Volume 7, Issue 1, 2021
Published: 21 September 2021
Abstract: Cannabis use alters sperm DNA methylation, but the potential reversibility of these changes is unknown. Semen samples from cannabis users and non-user controls were collected at baseline and again following a 77-day period of cannabis abstinence (one spermatogenic cycle)... Many of the differences in sperm DNA methylation between groups were diminished after cannabis abstinence. These results indicate that sustained cannabis abstinence significantly reduces the number of sperm showing cannabis-associated alterations at genes important for early development.
In summary: this report is the first to characterize the impact of cannabis use on the entirety of the sperm DNA methylome. It furthermore shows that refraining from cannabis use for 11 weeks resolves a substantial proportion of the effects of cannabis on the sperm methylome. These data begin to address critical knowledge gaps about the biological effects of this exposure, which is especially important as cannabis legalization expands.