Endocannabinoids

Publication Title: 
PloS One

BACKGROUND: The "classic" endocannabinoid (eCB) system includes the cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2, the eCB ligands anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), and their metabolic enzymes. An emerging literature documents the "eCB deficiency syndrome" as an etiology in migraine, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, psychological disorders, and other conditions. We performed a systematic review of clinical interventions that enhance the eCB system--ways to upregulate cannabinoid receptors, increase ligand synthesis, or inhibit ligand degradation.

Author(s): 
McPartland, John M.
Guy, Geoffrey W.
Di Marzo, Vincenzo
Publication Title: 
Biological Psychiatry

The past decade has witnessed a number of societal and political changes that have raised critical questions about the long-term impact of marijuana (Cannabis sativa) that are especially important given the prevalence of its abuse and that potential long-term effects still largely lack scientific data. Disturbances of the epigenome have generally been hypothesized as the molecular machinery underlying the persistent, often tissue-specific transcriptional and behavioral effects of cannabinoids that have been observed within one's lifetime and even into the subsequent generation.

Author(s): 
Szutorisz, Henrietta
Hurd, Yasmin L.
Publication Title: 
Journal of Abnormal Psychology

Despite evidence for heritable variation in cannabis involvement and the discovery of cannabinoid receptors and their endogenous ligands, no consistent patterns have emerged from candidate endocannabinoid (eCB) genetic association studies of cannabis involvement. Given interactions between eCB and stress systems and associations between childhood stress and cannabis involvement, it may be important to consider childhood adversity in the context of eCB-related genetic variation.

Author(s): 
Carey, Caitlin E.
Agrawal, Arpana
Zhang, Bo
Conley, Emily D.
Degenhardt, Louisa
Heath, Andrew C.
Li, Daofeng
Lynskey, Michael T.
Martin, Nicholas G.
Montgomery, Grant W.
Wang, Ting
Bierut, Laura J.
Hariri, Ahmad R.
Nelson, Elliot C.
Bogdan, Ryan
Publication Title: 
Molecular Pharmacology

Immune-mediated liver diseases including autoimmune and viral hepatitis are a major health problem worldwide. Natural cannabinoids such as Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) effectively modulate immune cell function, and they have shown therapeutic potential in treating inflammatory diseases. We investigated the effects of THC in a murine model of concanavalin A (ConA)-induced hepatitis. Intraperitoneal administration of THC after ConA challenge inhibited hepatitis as shown by significant decrease in liver enzymes and reduced liver tissue injury.

Author(s): 
Hegde, Venkatesh L.
Hegde, Shweta
Cravatt, Benjamin F.
Hofseth, Lorne J.
Nagarkatti, Mitzi
Nagarkatti, Prakash S.
Publication Title: 
Pharmacological Research: The Official Journal of the Italian Pharmacological Society

Cannabinoid pharmacology has made important advances in recent years after the discovery of the cannabinoid receptors. These discoveries have added to our understanding of exogenous and endogenous cannabinoid signaling along with exploring the various pathways of their biosynthesis, molecular structure, inactivation, and anatomical distribution of their receptors throughout the body. The endocannabinoid system is involved in immunoregulation and neuroprotection.

Author(s): 
Pandey, Rupal
Mousawy, Khalida
Nagarkatti, Mitzi
Nagarkatti, Prakash
Publication Title: 
The Journal of Neuroscience: The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience

Although it is well established that many glutamatergic neurons sequester Zn(2+) within their synaptic vesicles, the physiological significance of synaptic Zn(2+) remains poorly understood. In experiments performed in a Zn(2+)-enriched auditory brainstem nucleus--the dorsal cochlear nucleus--we discovered that synaptic Zn(2+) and GPR39, a putative metabotropic Zn(2+)-sensing receptor (mZnR), are necessary for triggering the synthesis of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG).

Author(s): 
Perez-Rosello, Tamara
Anderson, Charles T.
Schopfer, Francisco J.
Zhao, Yanjun
Gilad, David
Salvatore, Sonia R.
Freeman, Bruce A.
Hershfinkel, Michal
Aizenman, Elias
Tzounopoulos, Thanos
Publication Title: 
Lipids in Health and Disease

BACKGROUND: Alterations of endocannabinoid system in adipose tissue play an important role in lipid regulation and metabolic dysfunction associated with obesity. The purpose of this study was to determine whether gene expression levels of cannabinoid type 1 receptor (CB1) and fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) are different in subcutaneous abdominal and gluteal adipose tissue, and whether hypocaloric diet and aerobic exercise influence subcutaneous adipose tissue CB1 and FAAH gene expression in obese women.

Author(s): 
You, Tongjian
Disanzo, Beth L.
Wang, Xuewen
Yang, Rongze
Gong, Dawei
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