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.
Autoimmune hepatitis is a severe immune mediated chronic liver disease with a prevalence range between 50 and 200 cases per million in Western Europe and North America and mortality rates of up to 80% in untreated patients. The induction of CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors during liver injury and the potential involvement of endocannabinoids in the regulation of this process have sparked significant interest in further evaluating the role of cannabinoid systems during hepatic disease. Cannabinoids have been shown to possess significant immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory properties.
Cannabinoids have emerged as powerful drug candidates for the treatment of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases due to their immunosuppressive properties. Significant clinical and experimental data on the use of cannabinoids as anti-inflammatory agents exist in many autoimmune disease settings, but virtually no studies have been undertaken on their potential role in transplant rejection. Here we suggest a theoretical role for the use of cannabinoids in preventing allograft rejection.
Cannabinoid receptor activation by agents such as Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is known to trigger immune suppression. Here, we show that administration of THC in mice leads to rapid and massive expansion of CD11b(+)Gr-1(+) myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSC) expressing functional arginase and exhibiting potent immunosuppressive properties both in vitro and in vivo. The induction of MDSC by THC was associated with a significant increase in granulocyte CSF. Moreover, administration of anti-granulocyte CSF Ab inhibited the induction of MDSC by THC.
The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) is widely used to treat patients with life-threatening malignant and nonmalignant hematological diseases. However, allogeneic HCT often is accompanied by severe and lethal complications from graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), in which activated donor T cells recognize histocompatibility antigenic mismatches and cause significant toxicity in the recipient. In the current study, we tested the hypothesis that activation of cannabinoid receptors on donor-derived T cells may prevent GVHD.
Cannabis remains the most commonly abused illicit drug and is rapidly expanding in quasi-licit use in some jurisdictions under medical marijuana laws. Effects of the psychoactive constituent Δ⁹tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ⁹THC) on cognitive function remain of pressing concern. Prior studies in monkeys have not shown consistent evidence of memory-specific effects of Δ⁹THC on recognition tasks, and it remains unclear to what extent Δ⁹THC causes sedative versus specific cognitive effects.
Cannabis, or marijuana, has been used for medicinal purposes for many years. Several types of cannabinoid medicines are available in the United States and Canada. Dronabinol (schedule III), nabilone (schedule II), and nabiximols (not U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved) are cannabis-derived pharmaceuticals. Medical cannabis or medical marijuana, a leafy plant cultivated for the production of its leaves and flowering tops, is a schedule I drug, but patients obtain it through cannabis dispensaries and statewide programs.
Marijuana has been used for thousands of years as a treatment for medical conditions. However, untoward side effects limit its medical value. Here, we show that synaptic and cognitive impairments following repeated exposure to Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ(9)-THC) are associated with the induction of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), an inducible enzyme that converts arachidonic acid to prostanoids in the brain. COX-2 induction by Δ(9)-THC is mediated via CB1 receptor-coupled G protein βγ subunits.
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.
Obesity is a primary risk factor for multiple metabolic disorders. Many drugs for the treatment of obesity, which mainly act through CNS as appetite suppressants, have failed during development or been removed from the market due to unacceptable adverse effects. Thus, there are very few efficacious drugs available and remains a great unmet medical need for anti-obesity drugs that increase energy expenditure by acting on peripheral tissues without severe side effects.