“Acute pancreatitis is an inflammatory disease, which has several causes and symptoms and requires immediate medical attention.
The cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2R) is a G protein-coupled receptor that, in humans, is encoded by the CNR2 gene. CB2Rs are predominantly expressed in the periphery, especially in immune cells, suggesting that CB2R mediates the effects of cannabinoids mainly in the immune system.
Emerging evidence demonstrates that the blockade of intracellular Ca2+ signals may protect pancreatic acinar cells against Ca2+ overload, intracellular protease activation, and necrosis.
The activation of cannabinoid receptor subtype 2 (CB2R) prevents acinar cell pathogenesis in animal models of acute pancreatitis.
Collectively, we provide novel evidence that activation of CB2Rs eliminates ACh-induced Ca2+ oscillations and L-arginine-induced enhancement of Ca2+ signaling in mouse pancreatic acinar cells, which suggests a potential cellular mechanism of CB2R-mediated protection in acute pancreatitis.
These results suggest that a CB2R agonist may serve as a novel therapeutic strategy to prevent and/or treat acute pancreatitis. This conclusion is consistent with previous report that a CB2R agonist exhibits a protective effect on pathogenesis in an acute pancreatitis animal model. Our data showing a reduction of intracellular Ca2+ signaling by GW also provide a new target to interpret the role of CB2R agonists in treating acute pancreatitis in addition to CB2R-mediated anti-inflammation.”