CBD supplementation reduces arterial blood pressure via modulation of the sympatho-chromaffin system: A substudy from the HYPER-H21-4 trial

Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy

“Data concerning the effects of cannabidiol (CBD) on blood pressure (BP) is controversial. HYPER-H21-4 was a randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover trial which sought to elucidate if 5-week administration of CBD will reduce BP in hypertensive patients. In the substudy of this trial, we aimed to establish the mechanistic background of CBD-induced BP reduction. Specifically, we explored the dynamic of catestatin, a sympathoinhibitory peptide implicated in the pathophysiology of hypertension. In the present analysis, 54 patients with Grade 1 hypertension were included. 5-week administration of CBD but not placebo reduced serum catestatin concentration in comparison to baseline (13.50 [10.85-19.05] vs. 9.65 [6.37-12.26] ng/mL, p < 0.001). Serum catestatin levels at the start of the treatment period demonstrated a negative correlation with the extent of reduction in mean arterial pressure (r = -0.474, p < 0.001). Moreover, the extent of change in catestatin serum levels showed a strong correlation with the extent of mean arterial pressure reduction (r = 0.712, p < 0.001). Overall, the results of the present study imply that the antihypertensive effects of CBD may be explained by its interaction with the sympatho-chromaffin system, although further research is warranted.”


“CBD supplementation reduces office blood pressure (BP) and serum catestatin levels.”

“Overall, the results of the present study imply that antihypertensive effects of CBD may be explained by its interaction with the sympatho-chromaffin system, although further research is warranted.”


How do phytocannabinoids affect cardiovascular health? An update on the most common cardiovascular diseases

SAGE Journals Home

“Cardiovascular disease (CVD) causes millions of deaths worldwide each year. Despite the great progress in therapies available for patients with CVD, some limitations, including drug complications, still exist. Hence, the endocannabinoid system (ECS) was proposed as a new avenue for CVDs treatment. The ECS components are widely distributed through the body, including the heart and blood vessels, thus the action of its endogenous and exogenous ligands, in particular, phytocannabinoids play a key role in various pathological states. The cardiovascular action of cannabinoids is complex as they affect vasculature and myocardium directly via specific receptors and exert indirect effects through the central and peripheral nervous system. The growing interest in phytocannabinoid studies, however, has extended the knowledge about their molecular targets as well as therapeutical properties; nonetheless, some areas of their actions are not yet fully recognized. Researchers have reported various cannabinoids, especially cannabidiol, as a promising approach to CVDs; hence, the purpose of this review is to summarize and update the cardiovascular actions of the most potent phytocannabinoids and the potential therapeutic role of ECS in CVDs, including ischemic reperfusion injury, arrhythmia, heart failure as well as hypertension.”


“Accumulating evidence supports the crucial role of ECS in a wide range of physiological and pathophysiological conditions. In the cardiovascular system, ECS is involved in the inflammatory process, hemodynamic homeostasis, or cardiac rhythm control. Thus, it is not surprising that in many CVDs, ECS is highly active. Hence, pharmacological manipulation of the ECS, both by endocannabinoids and pCBs, may offer a novel therapeutic approach to cardiac disorders. Among many components of the Cannabis plant, studies on CBD demonstrate the greatest potential in experimental models of described herein CVDs. Although animal models and in vitro experiments have shown promising outcomes, data from human studies are still extremely limited and only these clinical trials may shed light on the actual therapeutic effect of CBD. Even though some effects of Cannabis compounds on the cardiovascular system are widely known, a thorough examination of their mechanism of action would greatly advance the understanding of pCBs. Molecular targets of Δ9-THC, CBG, CBC, CBN as well as THCV indicate their protective impact on the heart and blood vessels; nonetheless, the lack of in vitro, animal, or human studies creates a huge knowledge gap in this field.”


Cannabidiol Suppresses Cytokine Storm and Protects Against Cardiac and Renal Injury Associated with Sepsis

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“Background: Cytokine release syndrome, also termed “cytokine storm,” is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality among patients with various conditions such as sepsis. While cytokine storm is associated with multiple organ damage, acute cardiac and renal injury represents a hallmark of cytokine storm. Since recent reports have suggested that cannabidiol (CBD) may assist in the treatment of inflammatory diseases, our objective was to examine the effect of CBD on cytokine storm-induced cardiac and renal injury using the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced sepsis mouse model. 

Materials and Methods: At 8 weeks of age, mice were randomly assigned to receive CBD (15 mg/kg) or vehicle one hour before a single injection of either phosphate-buffered saline or LPS (10 mg/kg) for an additional 24 h. 

Results: Our results show that CBD improves cardiac function and reduces renal injury in a mouse model of cytokine storm. Moreover, our data indicate that CBD significantly reduces systemic and renal inflammation to contribute to the improvements observed in a cytokine storm-model of cardiac and renal injury. 

Conclusions: Overall, the findings of this study suggest that CBD could be repurposed to reduce morbidity in patients with cytokine storm particularly in severe infections such as sepsis.”



Treatment with Cannabidiol Results in an Antioxidant and Cardioprotective Effect in Several Pathophysiologies

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“Cannabis sativa has chemically active compounds called cannabinoids, where Δ9- tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD) are the major ones responsible for the various pharmacological effects.

The endocannabinoid system is an endogenous system considered a unique and widespread homeostatic physiological regulator. It is made up of type 1 (CB1) and type 2 (CB2) cannabinoid receptors. CBD, in turn, has a low affinity for CB1 and CB2 receptors, and regulates the effects arising from THC as a CB1 partial agonist, which are tachycardia, anxiety, and sedation. It also acts as a CB2 inverse agonist, resulting in anti-inflammatory effects.

Furthermore, its anticonvulsant, neuroprotective, antipsychotic, antiemetic, anxiolytic, anticancer, and antioxidant effects seem to be linked to other discovered receptors such as GRP55, 5TH1a, TRPV I, TRPV II and the regulation of the intracellular concentration of Ca2+. Regarding oxidative stress, O2- can act as an oxidizing agent, being reduced to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), or as a reducing agent, donating its extra electron to NO to form peroxynitrite (ONOO-). The ONOO- formed is capable of oxidizing proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids, causing several cell damages.

In this sense, CBD can prevent cardiac oxidative damage in many conditions, such as hypertension, diabetes, or even through the cardiotoxic effects induced by chemotherapy, which makes it a potential target for future clinical use to minimize the deleterious effects of many pathophysiologies.”



Pharmacognosy and Effects of Cannabinoids in the Vascular System

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“Understanding the pharmacodynamics of cannabinoids is an essential subject due to the recent increasing global acceptance of cannabis and its derivation for recreational and therapeutic purposes. Elucidating the interaction between cannabinoids and the vascular system is critical to exploring cannabinoids as a prospective therapeutic agent for treating vascular-associated clinical conditions.

This review aims to examine the effect of cannabinoids on the vascular system and further discuss the fundamental pharmacological properties and mechanisms of action of cannabinoids in the vascular system. Data from literature revealed a substantial interaction between endocannabinoids, phytocannabinoids, and synthetic cannabinoids within the vasculature of both humans and animal models. However, the mechanisms and the ensuing functional response is blood vessels and species-dependent. The current understanding of classical cannabinoid receptor subtypes and the recently discovered atypical cannabinoid receptors and the development of new synthetic analogs have further enhanced the pharmacological characterization of the vascular cannabinoid receptors.

Compelling evidence also suggest that cannabinoids represent a formidable therapeutic candidate for vascular-associated conditions.

Nonetheless, explanations of the mechanisms underlining these processes are complex and paradoxical based on the heterogeneity of receptors and signaling pathways. Further insight from studies that uncover the mechanisms underlining the therapeutic effect of cannabinoids in the treatment of vascular-associated conditions is required to determine whether the known benefits of cannabinoids thus currently outweigh the known/unknown risks.”



Protective effect and mechanism of cannabidiol on myocardial injury in exhaustive exercise training mice

Chemico-Biological Interactions

“Cannabinoid diphenol (CBD) is a non-toxic main component extracted from cannabis, which has the effects of anti-inflammatory, anti-apoptosis and anti-oxidative stress.

In recent years, exercise-induced myocardial injury has become a research hotspot in the field of sports medicine and sports physiology. Exercise-induced myocardial injury is closely related to oxidative stress, inflammatory response and apoptosis. However, there is no clear evidence of the relationship between CBD and exercise-induced myocardial injury.

In this study, by establishing an animal model of exhaustive exercise training in mice, the protective effect of CBD on myocardial injury in mice was elaborated, and the possible molecular mechanism was discussed.

After CBD intervention, the arrangement and rupture of myocardial fiber tissue and the degree of inflammatory cell infiltration were reduced, the deposition of collagen fibers in myocardial tissue decreased. CBD can also significantly inhibit cardiac hypertrophy. Meanwhile, the expression of IL-6, IL-10, TNF-α, Bax, Caspase-3, Bcl-2, MDA-5, IRE-1α, NOX-2, SOD-1, Keap1, Nrf2, HO-1, NF-κB and COX-2 was recovered to normal.

In addition, after CBD intervention, the protein expression of Keap1 was down-regulated, the translocation of Nrf2 from the cytoplasm to the nucleus was significantly increased, then the transcriptional activity was increased, and the expression of the downstream HO-1 antioxidant protein was increased, indicating that CBD may improve the cardiac function of exhaustive exercise training mice by activating Keap1/Nrf2/HO-1 signaling pathway. Molecular docking results also confirmed that CBD had a good binding effect with Keap1/Nrf2/HO-1 signaling pathway proteins.

In conclusion, the protective mechanism of CBD on myocardial injury in exhaustive exercise training mice may be to activate Keap1/Nrf2/HO-1 signaling pathway, and then exert anti-inflammatory, anti-apoptosis and inhibition of oxidative stress.”



Anti-inflammatory effects of cannabidiol against lipopolysaccharides in cardiac sodium channels

“Background: Sepsis, caused by a dysregulated host response to infections, can lead to cardiac arrhythmias. However, the mechanisms underlying sepsis-induced inflammation, and how inflammation provokes cardiac arrhythmias, are not well understood. We hypothesized that CBD may ameliorate lipopolysaccharides (LPS)-induced cardiotoxicity via Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR-4) and cardiac sodium channels (Nav1.5).

Methods and results: We incubated human immune cells (THP-1 macrophages) with LPS for 24 hours, then extracted the THP-1 incubation media. ELISA assay showed that LPS (1 or 5 μg/ml), in a concentration-dependent manner, or MPLA (TLR-4 agonist, 5 μg/ml) stimulated the THP-1 cells to release inflammatory cytokines (TNF-α and IL-6). Prior incubation (4 hours) with cannabidiol (CBD: 5 μM) or C34 (TLR-4 antagonist: 5 μg/ml) inhibited LPS and MPLA-induced release of both IL-6 and TNF-α. Human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hiPSC-CM) were subsequently incubated for 24 hours in the media extracted from THP-1 cells incubated with LPS, MPLA alone, or in combination with CBD or C34. Voltage-clamp experiments showed a right shift in the voltage dependence of Nav1.5 activation, steady state fast inactivation (SSFI), increased persistent current and prolonged in silico action potential duration in hiSPC-CM incubated in the LPS or MPLA-THP-1 media. Co-incubation with CBD or C34 rescued the biophysical dysfunction caused by LPS and MPLA.

Conclusion: Our results suggest that CBD may protect against sepsis-induced inflammation and subsequent arrhythmias through (i) inhibition of the release of inflammatory cytokines, antioxidant and anti-apoptotic effects and/or (ii) direct effect on Nav1.5.”



Vascular responses disrupted by fructose-induced hyperinsulinemia improved with delta-9- tetrahydrocannabinol

“Objectives: In recent years, cannabinoids have been shown to have beneficial effects on diabetic vascular complications.

Vascular complications due to fructose-induced hyperinsulinemia (HI) and diabetic vascular complications have similar mechanisms.

The aim of this experimental study was to observe whether the cannabinoid agonist delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) has an ameliorating effect on fructose-induced HI and vascular responses in the aortic ringof rats with HI.

Methods: A total of 24 rats were categorized into 4 groups: control (standard food pellets and water), HI (water containing 10% fructose provided for 12 weeks), THC (1.5 mg/kg/day intraperitoneal administration for 4 weeks), and THC+HI.Body weight was measured again on the last day of the study and the serum insulin level was measured with an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The acetylcholine (ACh) maximum relaxant effect in aortic rings pre-contractedwith noradrenaline (NA) was evaluated.

Results: The body weight of THC and THC+HI groups was lower compared with that of the controls (p<0.01). Increasedinsulin level as a result of fructose consumption decreased with THC administration (p<0.01) while the glucose level increased in all other groups compared with the control group (p<0.01, p<0.05). The NA Emax value decreased in thegroup receiving THC treatment (p<0.01). The increased ACh pD2 value in the HI groups also decreased in the THCtreatment group (p<0.0001). The decreased maximum inhibition value in the HI group increased significantly with THC administration (p<0.001).

Conclusion: THC demonstrated beneficial effects on fructose-induced HI. THC improved ACh-induced endothelialdependent relaxation in HI rat aortic rings.”



Inhibition of mitochondrial permeability transition pore and antioxidant effect of Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol reduces aluminium phosphide-induced cytotoxicity and dysfunction of cardiac mitochondria

Pesticide Biochemistry and Physiology

“Previous studies have demonstrated that phosphine gas (PH3) released from aluminium phosphide (AlP) can inhibit cytochrome oxidase in cardiac mitochondria and induce generation of free radicals, oxidative stress, alteration in antioxidant defense system and cardiotoxicity.

Available evidence suggests that cannabinoids have protective effects in the reduction of oxidative stress, mitochondrial and cardiovascular damages.

The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of trans-Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on AlP-induced toxicity in isolated cardiomyocytes and cardiac mitochondria.

Rat heart isolated cardiomyocytes and mitochondria were cotreated with different concentrations of THC (10, 50 and 100 μM) and IC50 of AlP, then cellular and mitochondrial toxicity parameters were assayed. Treatment with AlP alone increased the cytotoxicity, depletion of cellular glutathione (GSH), mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation, lipid oxidation, mitochondria membrane potential (ΔΨm) collapse and mitochondrial swelling, when compared to control group. However, incubation with THC (10, 50 and 100 μM) attenuated the AlP-induced changes in all these parameters in a THC concentration-dependent manner.

Interestingly, the obtained results showed remarkably significant protective effects of THC by attenuation the different parameters of cytotoxicity, mitochondrial toxicity and oxidative stress induced by ALP in isolated cardiomyocytes and cardiac mitochondria. It is the first report showing the protective effects of THC against AlP-induced toxicity, and these effects are related to antioxidant potential and inhibition of mitochondria permeability transition (MPT) pore.

Based on these results, it was hypothesized that THC may be used as a potential therapeutic agent for the treatment of AlP-induced mitochondrial dysfunction and cardiotoxicity.”


“AIP-induced mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress in mitochondria.•

THC inhibits AIP-induced mitochondrial dysfunction in isolated mitochondria.•

THC reverses AIP-induced mitochondrial swelling in isolated mitochondria.•

THC inhibits AIP-induced MMP (ΔΨm) collapse in isolated mitochondria.•

THC ameliorates AIP-induced cytotoxicity and oxidative stress in cardiomyocytes.”


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Role of cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system in modulation of diabetic cardiomyopathy

“Diabetic complications, chiefly seen in long-term situations, are persistently deleterious to a large extent, requiring multi-factorial risk reduction strategies beyond glycemic control. Diabetic cardiomyopathy is one of the most common deleterious diabetic complications, being the leading cause of mortality among diabetic patients. The mechanisms of diabetic cardiomyopathy are multi-factorial, involving increased oxidative stress, accumulation of advanced glycation end products (AGEs), activation of various pro-inflammatory and cell death signaling pathways, and changes in the composition of extracellular matrix with enhanced cardiac fibrosis. The novel lipid signaling system, the endocannabinoid system, has been implicated in the pathogenesis of diabetes and its complications through its two main receptors: Cannabinoid receptor type 1 and cannabinoid receptor type 2, alongside other components. However, the role of the endocannabinoid system in diabetic cardiomyopathy has not been fully investigated. This review aims to elucidate the possible mechanisms through which cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system could interact with the pathogenesis and the development of diabetic cardiomyopathy. These mechanisms include oxidative/ nitrative stress, inflammation, accumulation of AGEs, cardiac remodeling, and autophagy. A better understanding of the role of cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system in diabetic cardiomyopathy may provide novel strategies to manipulate such a serious diabetic complication.”


“Diabetes-induced cardiomyopathy is a deleterious complication of the cardiovascular system characterized by structural and functional changes in the myocardium that ultimately lead to cardiac failure. The mechanisms underlying the development of diabetic cardiomyopathy are complex and involve several pathogenic pathways. A great body of evidence supported a special role of oxidative/nitrative stress and inflammation in the pathogenesis of diabetic cardiomyopathy. The endocannabinoid system has been implicated in the development of several pathological conditions including cardiovascular disorders. Several mechanisms have been proposed as targets by which cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system could modulate cardiovascular disorders and recent evidence suggested the involvement of this system in the pathogenesis of diabetic cardiomyopathy. Indeed, the manipulation of the endocannabinoid system could represent a promising therapeutic approach for diabetic cardiomyopathy, and several mechanisms have been proposed for this role including its effects on oxidative/nitrative stress, inflammatory pathways, and autophagy together with possible effects on cardiac remodeling. However, more research is needed to define the exact mechanisms of the intervention of the different components of this system in diabetic cardiomyopathy.”