Novel insights into mitochondrial molecular targets of iron-induced neurodegeneration: reversal by cannabidiol.

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“Evidence has demonstrated iron accumulation in specific brain regions of patients suffering from neurodegenerative disorders, and this metal has been recognized as a contributing factor for neurodegeneration.

Using an experimental model of brain iron accumulation, we have shown that iron induces severe memory deficits that are accompanied by oxidative stress, increased apoptotic markers, and decreased synaptophysin in the hippocampus of rats.

The present study aims to characterize iron loading effects as well as to determine the molecular targets of cannabidiol (CBD), the main non-psychomimetic compound of Cannabis sativa, on mitochondria.

Rats received iron in the neonatal period and CBD for 14 days in adulthood. Iron induced mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) deletions, decreased epigenetic modulation of mtDNA, mitochondrial ferritin levels, and succinate dehydrogenase activity.

CBD rescued mitochondrial ferritin and epigenetic modulation of mtDNA, and restored succinate dehydrogenase activity in iron-treated rats.

These findings provide new insights into molecular targets of iron neurotoxicity and give support for the use of CBD as a disease modifying agent in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29374603

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Cannabinoids for the treatment of neuropsychiatric symptoms, pain and weight loss in dementia.

“Efficacious treatment for neuropsychiatric symptoms (NPS), pain and weight loss for dementia patients is desperately needed.

This review presents an up-to-date look at the literature investigating the use of cannabinoid for these symptoms in dementia.

RECENT FINDINGS:

We searched electronically for publications regarding cannabinoid use in dementia, with a focus on Alzheimer’s disease. Seven studies and one case report have been conducted to examine the use of cannabinoids for the treatment of NPS of dementia, and three of these trials reported on the effect of cannabinoids on weight. Five studies reported decreased agitation or improvements in sleep with cannabinoid use. One crossover trial found that cannabinoids positively impacted weight, whereas a chart review study found no impact on weight with cannabinoids, but an increase in food intake. There were no trials examining the use of cannabinoids for pain in dementia.

SUMMARY:

Findings from trials with small sample sizes and various clinical populations suggest that cannabinoid use may be well tolerated and effective for treatment of NPS such as agitation as well as weight and pain management in patients with dementia. Additional studies are necessary to further elucidate the relative risks and benefits of this treatment.”

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A Systematic Review of the Effectiveness of Medical Cannabis for Psychiatric, Movement and Neurodegenerative Disorders.

“The discovery of endocannabinoid’s role within the central nervous system and its potential therapeutic benefits have brought forth rising interest in the use of cannabis for medical purposes. The present review aimed to synthesize and evaluate the available evidences on the efficacy of cannabis and its derivatives for psychiatric, neurodegenerative and movement disorders. A systematic search of randomized controlled trials of cannabis and its derivatives were conducted via databases (PubMed, Embase and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials). A total of 24 reports that evaluated the use of medical cannabis for Alzheimer’s disease, anorexia nervosa, anxiety, dementia, dystonia, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), psychosis and Tourette syndrome were included in this review. Trial quality was assessed with the Cochrane risk of bias tool. There is a lack of evidence on the therapeutic effects of cannabinoids for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and dystonia. Although trials with positive findings were identified for anorexia nervosa, anxiety, PTSD, psychotic symptoms, agitation in Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, Huntington’s disease, and Tourette syndrome, and dyskinesia in Parkinson’s disease, definitive conclusion on its efficacy could not be drawn. Evaluation of these low-quality trials, as rated on the Cochrane risk of bias tools, was challenged by methodological issues such as inadequate description of allocation concealment, blinding and underpowered sample size. More adequately powered controlled trials that examine the long and short term efficacy, safety and tolerability of cannabis for medical use, and the mechanisms underpinning the therapeutic potential are warranted.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29073741

http://www.cpn.or.kr/journal/view.html?doi=10.9758/cpn.2017.15.4.301

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Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (∆9-THC) Induce Neurogenesis and Improve Cognitive Performances of Male Sprague Dawley Rats.

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“Neurogenesis is influenced by various external factors such as enriched environments. Some researchers had postulated that neurogenesis has contributed to the hippocampal learning and memory. This project was designed to observe the effect of Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (∆9-THC) in cognitive performance that influenced by the neurogenesis.

Different doses of ∆9-THC were used for observing the neurogenesis mechanism occurs in the hippocampus of rats. The brains were stained with antibodies, namely BrdU, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), nestin, doublecortin (DCX) and class III β-tubulin (TuJ-1). The cognitive test was used novel-object discrimination test (NOD) while the proteins involved, DCX and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), were measured.

Throughout this study, ∆9-THC enhanced the markers involved in all stages of neurogenesis mechanism. Simultaneously, the cognitive behaviour of rat also showed improvement in learning and memory functions observed in behavioural test and molecular perspective.

Administration of ∆9-THC was observed to enhance the neurogenesis in the brain, especially in hippocampus thus improved the cognitive function of rats.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28933048

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A chronic low dose of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) restores cognitive function in old mice

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“The balance between detrimental, pro-aging, often stochastic processes and counteracting homeostatic mechanisms largely determines the progression of aging. There is substantial evidence suggesting that the endocannabinoid system (ECS) is part of the latter system because it modulates the physiological processes underlying aging.

The activity of the ECS declines during aging, as CB1 receptor expression and coupling to G proteins are reduced in the brain tissues of older animals and the levels of the major endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) are lower. However, a direct link between endocannabinoid tone and aging symptoms has not been demonstrated.

Here we show that a low dose of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) reversed the age-related decline in cognitive performance of mice aged 12 and 18 months. This behavioral effect was accompanied by enhanced expression of synaptic marker proteins and increased hippocampal spine density.

THC treatment restored hippocampal gene transcription patterns such that the expression profiles of THC-treated mice aged 12 months closely resembled those of THC-free animals aged 2 months. The transcriptional effects of THC were critically dependent on glutamatergic CB1 receptors and histone acetylation, as their inhibition blocked the beneficial effects of THC.

Thus, restoration of CB1 signaling in old individuals could be an effective strategy to treat age-related cognitive impairments.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28481360

https://www.nature.com/nm/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nm.4311.html

“CAN MARIJUANA RESTORE MEMORY? NEW STUDY SHOWS CANNABIS CAN REVERSE COGNITIVE DECLINE IN MICE” http://www.newsweek.com/cannabis-marijuana-restores-memory-learning-cognitive-decline-596160

“A little cannabis every day might keep brain ageing at bay” https://www.newscientist.com/article/2130257-a-little-cannabis-every-day-might-keep-brain-ageing-at-bay/

“Low-dose cannabinoid THC restores memory and learning in old mice”  http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/317342.php

“Daily Dose Of Cannabis May Protect And Heal The Brain From Effects Of Aging”  https://www.forbes.com/sites/janetwburns/2017/05/08/daily-dose-of-cannabis-may-protect-and-heal-the-brain-from-effects-of-aging/#70ef658f2e44

“Cannabis reverses aging processes in the brain”  https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-05-cannabis-reverses-aging-brain.html

“Future dementia cure – Chemical in cannabis could REVERSE the ageing process” http://www.express.co.uk/life-style/health/801827/dementia-cure-cannabis-THC-chemical-memory

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β-Caryophyllene/Hydroxypropyl-β-Cyclodextrin Inclusion Complex Improves Cognitive Deficits in Rats with Vascular Dementia through the Cannabinoid Receptor Type 2 -Mediated Pathway.

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“This work was conducted to prepare β-caryophyllene-hydroxypropyl-β-cyclodextrin inclusion complex (HPβCD/BCP) and investigate its effects and mechanisms on cognitive deficits in vascular dementia (VD) rats.

Overall, the findings demonstrated the protective effects of HPβCD/BCP against cognitive deficits induced by chronic cerebral ischemia and suggested the potential of HPβCD/BCP in the therapy of vascular dementia in the future.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28154534

“β-caryophyllene (BCP) is a common constitute of the essential oils of numerous spice, food plants and major component in Cannabis.”  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23138934

“Cyclodextrin” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclodextrin

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Cannabinoids and Dementia: A Review of Clinical and Preclinical Data.

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“The endocannabinoid system has been shown to be associated with neurodegenerative diseases and dementia.

We review the preclinical and clinical data on cannabinoids and four neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Huntington’s disease (HD), Parkinson’s disease (PD) and vascular dementia (VD).

Numerous studies have demonstrated an involvement of the cannabinoid system in neurotransmission, neuropathology and neurobiology of dementias. In addition, several candidate compounds have demonstrated efficacy in vitro.

However, some of the substances produced inconclusive results in vivo. Therefore, only few trials have aimed to replicate the effects seen in animal studies in patients. Indeed, the literature on cannabinoid administration in patients is scarce.

While preclinical findings suggest causal treatment strategies involving cannabinoids, clinical trials have only assessed the suitability of cannabinoid receptor agonists, antagonists and cannabidiol for the symptomatic treatment of dementia.

Further research is needed, including in vivo models of dementia and human studies.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27713372

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Selective modulator of cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2) against biochemical alterations and brain damage in chronic cerebral hypoperfusion induced vascular dementia.

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“Vascular dementia is the second most common cause of cognitive decline in aged people but the effectual therapeutic target is still missing.

Chronic cerebral hypoperfusion (CCH) has been widely found in vascular dementia (VaD) patients. CCH is thought to link with neurodegenerative disorders and their subsequent cognitive impairment.

The present study has been framed to investigate the role of selective agonist of CB2 receptor (1-phenylisatin) in CCH induced VaD.

These results indicate that 2VO induced CCH in rats, which was attenuated with the treatment of 1-phenylisatin.

Hence, it may be suggested that modulation in cannabinoid receptor may provide benefits in CCH as cognitive impairment and VaD.

Therefore, pharmacological positive modulation of CB2 receptors may be a potential research target for alleviation of VaD.”

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27599483

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Delineating the Efficacy of a Cannabis-Based Medicine at Advanced Stages of Dementia in a Murine Model.

 

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“Previous reports have demonstrated that the combination of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) botanical extracts, which are the components of an already approved cannabis-based medicine, reduce the Alzheimer-like phenotype of AβPP/PS1 transgenic mice when chronically administered during the early symptomatic stage.

Here, we provide evidence that such natural cannabinoids are still effective in reducing memory impairment in AβPP/PS1 mice at advanced stages of the disease but are not effective in modifying the Aβ processing or in reducing the glial reactivity associated with aberrant Aβ deposition as occurs when administered at early stages of the disease.

The present study also demonstrates that natural cannabinoids do not affect cognitive impairment associated with healthy aging in wild-type mice.

The positive effects induced by Δ9-THC and CBD in aged AβPP/PS1 mice are associated with reduced GluR2/3 and increased levels of GABA-A Ra1 in cannabinoid-treated animals when compared with animals treated with vehicle alone.”

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27567873

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Agitation in Alzheimer Disease as a Qualifying Condition for Medical Marijuana in the United States.

“Of the 24 states and localities where medical marijuana is legal, dementia is a qualifying condition in 10 (41.7%), primarily for agitation of Alzheimer disease.

Dementia is somewhat commonly listed as a potential qualifying condition for medical marijuana.

Currently, few applicants for medical marijuana list dementia as the reason for seeking certification. However, given increasingly open attitudes toward recreational and medical marijuana use, providers should be aware that dementia is a potential indication for licensing, despite lack of evidence for its efficacy.”

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27389672

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