“Staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB) is a potent activator of Vβ8+T-cells resulting in the clonal expansion of ∼30% of the T-cell pool. Consequently, this leads to the release of inflammatory cytokines, toxic shock, and eventually death.
In the current study, we investigated if Δ9tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a cannabinoid known for its anti-inflammatory properties, could prevent SEB-induced mortality and alleviate symptoms of toxic shock.
Exposure to SEB resulted in acute mortality, while THC treatment led to 100% survival of mice. SEB induced the miRNA-17-92 cluster, specifically miRNA-18a, which targeted Pten (phosphatase and tensin homologue), an inhibitor of the PI3K/Akt signalling pathway, thereby suppressing T-regulatory cells. In contrast, THC treatment inhibited the individual miRNAs in the cluster, reversing the effects of SEB.
Conclusions and Implications
We report, for the first time a role for the miRNA 17–92 cluster in SEB-mediated inflammation. Furthermore, our results suggest that THC is a potent anti-inflammatory compound that may serve as a novel therapeutic to suppress SEB-induced pulmonary inflammation by modulating critical miRNA involved in SEB-induced toxicity and death.
Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is a marijuana plant-derived cannabinoid known for its robust anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties. The anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive effects of THC are diverse and function effectively to abrogate a number of inflammatory processes.
Taken together, our data demonstrate that THC is a strong anti-inflammatory agent capable of rescuing mice from SEB-mediated toxicity and death.”