Cannabidiol alleviates suture-induced corneal pathological angiogenesis and inflammation by inducing myeloid-derived suppressor cells

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“Background: Currently, no perfect treatment for neovascularization and lymphangiogenesis exist, and each treatment method has its complications and side effects. This study aimed to investigate the anti-angiogenic and anti-inflammatory effects of cannabidiol and its mechanism of action.

Method: An in vivo corneal neovascularization (CNV) model was established using the suture method to investigate the inhibitory effects of CBD on suture-induced corneal inflammation, pathological blood vessel formation, and lymphangiogenesis. Additionally, the impact of CBD on immune cells was studied. In vitro methodologies, including cell sorting and co-culture, were employed to elucidate its mechanism of action.

Results: Compared with the CNV group, CBD can inhibit CNV, lymphangiogenesis, and inflammation induced via the suture method. In addition, CBD specifically induced CD45+CD11b+Gr-1+ cell upregulation, which significantly inhibited the proliferation of CD4+ T lymphocytes in vitro and exhibited a CD31+ phenotype, proving that they were myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs). We administered anti-Gr-1 to mice to eliminate MDSCs in vivo and found that anti-Gr-1 partially reversed the anti-inflammatory and angiogenic effects of CBD. Furthermore, we found that compared with MDSCs in the normal group, CBD-induced MDSCs overexpress peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma (PPAR-γ). Administering PPAR-γ inhibitor in mice almost reversed the induction of MDSCs by CBD, demonstrating the role of PPAR-γ in the function of CBD.

Conclusion: This study indicates that CBD may induce MDSCs upregulation by activating the nuclear receptor PPAR-γ, exerting anti-inflammatory, antiangiogenic, and lymphangiogenic effects, and revealing potential therapeutic targets for corneal neovascularization and lymphangiogenesis.”

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