Cannabinoids in Dermatologic Surgery

JAAD Journals on Twitter: "Have questions for JAAD authors? Join the new  JAAD Virtual Journal Club and start engaging with authors today:  https://t.co/KWSzvAEPd5… https://t.co/ip6aG4d2fm"“Though known as a medicinal herb for centuries, the recent legalization of cannabinoids across many states has ushered in a new era where cannabinoids have become a popular treatment option amongst clinicians and patients alike. Cannabinoids have demonstrated efficacy in wound healing, reducing inflammation, ameliorating pain, and have shown potential as an anti-tumor agent. As a result, cannabinoids have been rapidly woven into the fabric of modern medicine. However, the utility of cannabinoids in dermatologic surgery has not been explored to date. In this paper, we review the current literature to discuss the potential impact of cannabinoid use in dermatologic surgery.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33422628/

https://www.jaad.org/article/S0190-9622(21)00104-3/pdf

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Phytocannabinoid Pharmacology: Medicinal Properties of Cannabis sativa Constituents Aside from the “Big Two”

 Go to Volume 0, Issue 0“Plant-based therapies date back centuries. Cannabis sativa is one such plant that was used medicinally up until the early part of the 20th century.

Although rich in diverse and interesting phytochemicals, cannabis was largely ignored by the modern scientific community due to its designation as a schedule 1 narcotic and restrictions on access for research purposes. There was renewed interest in the early 1990s when the endocannabinoid system (ECS) was discovered, a complex network of signaling pathways responsible for physiological homeostasis. Two key components of the ECS, cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2), were identified as the molecular targets of the phytocannabinoid Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC).

Restrictions on access to cannabis have eased worldwide, leading to a resurgence in interest in the therapeutic potential of cannabis. Much of the focus has been on the two major constituents, Δ9-THC and cannabidiol (CBD). Cannabis contains over 140 phytocannabinoids, although only a handful have been tested for pharmacological activity. Many of these minor cannabinoids potently modulate receptors, ionotropic channels, and enzymes associated with the ECS and show therapeutic potential individually or synergistically with other phytocannabinoids.

The following review will focus on the pharmacological developments of the next generation of phytocannabinoid therapeutics.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33356248/

https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acs.jnatprod.0c00965

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Cannabinoid receptor activation on hematopoietic cells and enterocytes protects against colitis

Oxford University Press“Cannabinoid receptor (CB) activation can attenuate inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in experimental models and human cohorts. However, the role of the microbiome, metabolome, or the respective contributions of hematopoietic and non-hematopoietic cells in the anti-colitic effects of cannabinoids has yet to be determined.

Methods: Female C57BL/6 mice were treated with either cannabidiol (CBD), Δ 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a combination of CBD and THC or vehicle, in several models of chemically induced colitis. Clinical parameters of colitis were assessed by colonoscopy, histology, flow cytometry and detection of serum biomarkers; single-cell RNA sequencing and qRT-PCR were used to evaluate the effects of cannabinoids on enterocytes. Immune cell transfer from CB2 knockout mice was used to evaluate the contribution of hematopoietic and non-hematopoietic cells to colitis protection.

Results: We found that THC prevented colitis, and that CBD, at the dose tested, provided little benefit to the amelioration of colitis, or when added synergistically with THC. THC increased colonic barrier integrity by stimulating mucus, tight junction and antimicrobial peptide production, and these effects were specific to the large intestine. THC increased colonic gram-negative bacteria, but the anti-colitic effects of THC were independent of the microbiome. THC acted on both immune cells via CB2 and on enterocytes to attenuate colitis.

Conclusions: Our findings demonstrate how cannabinoid receptor activation on both immune cells and colonocytes is critical to prevent colonic inflammation. These studies also suggest how cannabinoid receptor activation can be used as a preventive and therapeutic modality against colitis.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33331878/

https://academic.oup.com/ecco-jcc/advance-article-abstract/doi/10.1093/ecco-jcc/jjaa253/6040793?redirectedFrom=fulltext

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Role of marijuana components on the regenerative ability of stem cells

“Stem cell therapy promotes tissue regeneration and wound healing. Efforts have been made to prime stem cells to enhance their regenerative abilities.

Certain marijuana components, namely the non-psychoactive cannabidiol (CBD) and psychoactive tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), are defined as immunomodulators.9 We test whether two sources of stem cells, primed with CBD or THC, would demonstrate improved regenerative abilities.

Human adipose-derived stem cells (ASCs) and bone marrow-derived stem cells (BMDSCs), not obtained from the same individual, were treated with low (300 nM) or high (3 μM) concentration CBD. Porcine ASCs and BMDSCs were isolated from a single pig, and treated with either low or high concentrations of CBD or THC. Transwell migration and MTT proliferation assays were performed on the human ASCs and BMDSCs. Also, transwell migration assay was performed on the porcine ASCs and BMDSCs. Finally, a wound healing scratch assay in porcine primary fibroblasts (PFs) was performed, co-cultured with the cannabinoid-treated ASCs.

CBD priming at low concentration induces migration by 180% (P < .01) in porcine ASCs, and by only 93% (P < .02) in porcine BMDSCs. In porcine stem cells, THC priming at low concentration induces migration by 91.6% (P < .01) in ASCs but by only 44.3% (P < .03) in BMDSCs. Compared to PFs co-cultured with untreated ASCs, PFs co-cultured with low CBD-primed ASCs had 75% faster wound closure at 18 hours (P < .01).

CBD and THC priming of ASCs and BMDSCs, particularly at lower doses, enhances a number of regenerative parameters, suggesting that these major marijuana components may improve stem cell-based therapies.

SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY: Our study demonstrates that cannabinoids can enhance the regenerative capacity of two major sources of stem cells, adipose- and bone marrow-derived, from human and porcine donors. Stem cell isolation and expansion is invasive, costly and time consuming. Stem cells with improved regenerative properties may be effective in the treatment of acute or chronic wounds. This is the first study to compare the priming potential of two sources of stem cells from the same animal, with the same genetic and epigenetic profile, as well as the first to prime with THC.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33349985/

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/cbf.3609

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Cannabinoid control of neurogenic inflammation

 British Journal of Pharmacology“A significant number of cannabinoids are known to have analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties in various diseases. Due to their presynaptic/terminal location, cannabinoid receptors can inhibit synaptic transmission and have the potential to regulate neurogenic inflammation. Neurogenic inflammation occurs when a noxious signal is detected in the periphery initiating an antidromic axon reflex in the same sensory neurone leading to depolarization of the afferent terminal. Neuropeptides are subsequently released and contribute to vasodilation, plasma extravasation and modulation of immune cells. Endocannabinoids, synthetic cannabinoids and phytocannabinoids can reduce neuroinflammation by inhibiting afferent firing and inflammatory neuropeptide release. Thus, in addition to a direct effect on vascular smooth muscle and inflammatory cells, cannabinoids can reduce inflammation by silencing small diameter neurones. This review examines the neuropharmacological processes involved in regulating antidromic depolarization of afferent nerve terminals by cannabinoids and the control of neurogenic inflammation in different diseases.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33289534/

https://bpspubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/bph.15208

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Assessment of antiviral potencies of cannabinoids against SARS-CoV-2 using computational and in vitro approaches

International Journal of Biological Macromolecules“Effective treatment choices to the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) are limited because of the absence of effective target-based therapeutics. The main object of the current research was to estimate the antiviral activity of cannabinoids (CBDs) against the human coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.

In the presented research work, we performed in silico and in vitro experiments to aid the sighting of lead CBDs for treating the viral infections of SARS-CoV-2. Virtual screening was carried out for interactions between 32 CBDs and the SARS-CoV-2 Mpro enzyme. Afterward, in vitro antiviral activity was carried out of five CBDs molecules against SARS-CoV-2.

Interestingly, among them, two CBDs molecules namely Δ (Yu et al., 2020 [9])-tetrahydrocannabinol (IC50 = 10.25 μM) and cannabidiol (IC50 = 7.91 μM) were observed to be more potent antiviral molecules against SARS-CoV-2 compared to the reference drugs lopinavir, chloroquine, and remdesivir (IC50 ranges of 8.16-13.15 μM). These molecules were found to have stable conformations with the active binding pocket of the SARS-CoV-2 Mpro by molecular dynamic simulation and density functional theory.

Our findings suggest cannabidiol and Δ (Yu et al., 2020 [9])-tetrahydrocannabinol are possible drugs against human coronavirus that might be used in combination or with other drug molecules to treat COVID-19 patients.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33290767/

“In summary, this report demonstrates the antiviral potencies of CBD and Δ9-THC against SARS-CoV-2. Based on privileged safety index CBD and Δ9-THC in human and their current in vitro potencies against SARS-CoV-2, it can be concluded that these compounds are potential antiviral molecules towards SARS-CoV-2 and may have worked as dual-acting against SARS-CoV-2, not only block the viral translation procedure by inhibiting SARS-CoV-2 Mpro but also reduce pro-inflammatory cytokines levels in lung cells by acting as agonists of CB-2 receptor. The successful in vitro work here of CBD and Δ9-THC lays the framework for their application in human clinical trials for the treatment of human coronavirus infections. Thus, CBD and Δ9-THC may be used in combination or with other drugs to treat COVID-19 patients.”

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0141813020351783?via%3Dihub

Fig. 1

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L-Theanine Prevents Long-Term Affective and Cognitive Side-Effects of Adolescent Δ-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol Exposure and Blocks Associated Molecular and Neuronal Abnormalities in the Mesocorticolimbic Circuitry

Journal of Neuroscience“Chronic adolescent exposure to Δ-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is linked to elevated neuropsychiatric risk and induces neuronal, molecular and behavioural abnormalities resembling neuropsychiatric endophenotypes. Previous evidence has revealed that the mesocorticolimbic circuitry, including the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and mesolimbic dopamine (DA) pathway are particularly susceptible to THC-induced pathological alterations, including dysregulation of DAergic activity states, loss of PFC GABAergic inhibitory control and affective and cognitive abnormalities. There are currently limited pharmacological intervention strategies capable of preventing THC-induced neuropathological adaptations.

L-theanine is an amino acid analogue of L-glutamate and L-glutamine derived from various plant sources, including green tea leaves. L-theanine has previously been shown to modulate levels of GABA, DA and glutamate in various neural regions and to possess neuroprotective properties.

Using a pre-clinical model of adolescent THC exposure in male rats, we report that L-theanine pre-treatment prior to adolescent THC exposure is capable of preventing long-term, THC-induced dysregulation of both PFC and VTA DAergic activity states, a neuroprotective effect which persists into adulthood. In addition, pre-treatment with L-theanine blocked THC-induced downregulation of local GSK-3 and Akt signaling pathways directly in the PFC, two biomarkers previously associated with cannabis-related psychiatric risk and sub-cortical DAergic dysregulation.

Finally, L-theanine powerfully blocked the development of both affective and cognitive abnormalities commonly associated with adolescent THC exposure, further demonstrating functional and long-term neuroprotective effects of L-theanine in the mesocorticolimbic system.

SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT With the increasing trend of cannabis legalization and consumption during adolescence, it is essential to expand knowledge on the potential effects of adolescent cannabis exposure on brain development and identify potential pharmacological strategies to minimize THC-induced neuropathology. Previous evidence demonstrates that adolescent THC exposure induces long-lasting affective and cognitive abnormalities, mesocorticolimbic dysregulation and schizophrenia-like molecular biomarkers that persist into adulthood.

We demonstrate for the first time that L-theanine, an amino acid analogue of L-glutamate and L-glutamine, is capable of preventing long-term THC side-effects. L-theanine prevented development of THC-induced behavioral aberrations, blocked cortical downregulation of local GSK-3 and Akt signaling pathways and normalized dysregulation of both PFC and VTA DAergic activity, demonstrating powerful and functional neuroprotective effects against THC-induced developmental neuropathology.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33268546/

https://www.jneurosci.org/content/early/2020/11/24/JNEUROSCI.1050-20.2020

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Medicinal Applications of Cannabinoids Extracted from Cannabis sativa (L.): A new Route to Fight against COVID-19?

 “Cannabis sativa is a well-known plant which has been of benefit since ancient times in several medicinal systems, including Chinese, Indian, Greek and Egyptian ones.

Although C. sativa is one of the most investigated medicinal plants in the world, it faces the most controversial of issues for its legalization as a medication. C. sativa contains several hundreds of phytoconstituents including the infamous «cannabinoid.” It is necessary to properly understand the medicinal importance of these phytochemicals and spread awareness among the countries where it’s still facing legal complexities.

The current review is focusing on most recent literature pertaining to the various applications of cannabinoids with a special focus on medicinal aspect of the phytochemicals. Peer reviewed articles focusing on the importance of cannabis and cannabinoids were the target of this review. Articles were selected based on the relevance to the general scope of the work i.e. application of cannabinoids.

Cannabinoids can truly be regarded as wonder drug keeping their immense diversity of usage but unfortunately, many of the mares never researched biologically or pharmacologically due to their low yield in the plant. However, the approval of some cannabinoids by the FDA (along with other recognized national medical health systems) has opened the horizons for the explicit use of these natural drugs in medicines such as Epidiolex® (cannabidiol used for the treatment of severe forms of epilepsy) and Sativex®(‘Δ9 -tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol’ used for the treatment of spasticity caused by multiple sclerosis, aka: MS.)

Many pharmacological properties of C. sativa are attributed to cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive component, along with Δ9 -tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9 -THC), a psychoactive component. This review addresses the most important application or current utilization of cannabinoids in a variety of treatments such as: chronic pain, cancer, emesis, anorexia, irritable bowel syndrome, communicative diseases, glaucoma and central nervous system disorders. The biosynthetic pathway of cannabinoids is also discussed. In short, this plant has a myriad of bioactive compounds which have the potential to increase the list of approved cannabinoids suitable for therapy.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33267756/

https://www.eurekaselect.com/188617/article

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Short-Term Medical Cannabis Treatment Regimens Produced Beneficial Effects among Palliative Cancer Patients

pharmaceuticals-logo“In the last decade the use of medical cannabis (MC) for palliative cancer treatment has risen. However, the choice between products is arbitrary and most patients are using Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-dominant cannabis products.

In this study, we aimed to assess the short-term outcomes of MC treatment prescribed by oncologists in relation to the type of cannabis they receive.

A comparative analysis was used to assess the differences in treatment effectiveness and safety between THC-dominant (n = 56, 52%), cannabidiol (CBD)-dominant (n = 19, 18%), and mixed (n = 33, 30%) MC treatments. Oncology patients (n = 108) reported on multiple symptoms in baseline questionnaires, initiated MC treatment, and completed a one-month follow-up.

Most parameters improved significantly from baseline, including pain intensity, affective and sensory pain, sleep quality and duration, cancer distress, and both physical and psychological symptom burden. There was no significant difference between the three MC treatments in the MC-related safety profile. Generally, there were no differences between the three MC treatments in pain intensity and in most secondary outcomes.

Unexpectedly, CBD-dominant oil treatments were similar to THC-dominant treatments in their beneficial effects for most secondary outcomes. THC-dominant treatments showed significant superiority in their beneficial effect only in sleep duration compared to CBD-dominant treatments.

This work provides evidence that, though patients usually consume THC-dominant products, caregivers should also consider CBD-dominant products as a useful treatment for cancer-related symptoms.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33265945/

https://www.mdpi.com/1424-8247/13/12/435

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Perioperative Cannabis as a Potential Solution for Reducing Opioid and Benzodiazepine Dependence

See the source image“Cannabis is increasingly being used for medicinal purposes but remains outside Western medical practice. Data on perioperative use and outcomes are scarce. Few surgeons receive training regarding legal endorsement, reported medicinal benefits, and potential risks, making it difficult to advise patients. Guidelines and additional research are needed.

Observations: It is legal to recommend cannabis, which can be obtained in states with medical cannabis programs. There are many methods of consumption, oral being the safest. Activity is primarily through Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) via cannabinoid receptors, which may be potentiated when taken together in the plant or plant extract. The known effects of cannabis on inflammation and malignancy are largely limited to laboratory experiments. However, there are higher-quality data to support adjunctive use of cannabis for relief of pain, nausea, and insomnia, which may be useful postoperatively and could potentially decrease reliance on opiates and benzodiazepines. There are prospective trials in surgical patients, but no reported data regarding surgical complications or other surgical outcomes. Currently, cannabis is regulated differently than other controlled substances, and there are issues with purity/homogeneity, making it difficult for surgeons to accept or significantly explore its medical benefits.

Conclusions and relevance: Recommendations are made for surgeons advising patients who use cannabis based on the limited existing data. While cannabis likely has some therapeutic benefits, it must be treated as other medical controlled substances to truly elucidate its role in surgical patient care.”

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33263719/

https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamasurgery/article-abstract/2773526

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