Synthetic peripherally-restricted cannabinoid suppresses chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy pain symptoms by CB1 receptor activation.

 Neuropharmacology

“Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) is a severe and dose-limiting side effect of cancer treatment that affects millions of cancer survivors throughout the world and current treatment options are extremely limited by their side effects.

Cannabinoids are highly effective in suppressing pain symptoms of chemotherapy-induced and other peripheral neuropathies but their widespread use is limited by central nervous system (CNS)-mediated side effects.

Here, we tested one compound from a series of recently developed synthetic peripherally restricted cannabinoids (PRCBs) in a rat model of cisplatin-induced peripheral neuropathy.

Our results demonstrate that PRCBs exemplified by PrNMI may represent a viable option for the treatment of CIPN pain symptoms.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29981335

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0028390818303575?via%3Dihub

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Preliminary evaluation of the efficacy, safety, and costs associated with the treatment of chronic pain with medical cannabis.

College of Psychiatric and Neurologic Pharmacists

“Medical cannabis (MC) is commonly claimed to be an effective treatment for chronic or refractory pain. With interest in MC in the United States growing, as evidenced by the 29 states and 3 US districts that now have public MC programs, the need for clinical evidence supporting this claim has never been greater.

METHODS:

This was a retrospective, mirror-image study that investigated MC’s effectiveness in patients suffering from chronic pain associated with qualifying conditions for MC in New York State. The primary outcome was to compare European Quality of Life 5 Dimension Questionnaire (EQ-5D) and Pain Quality Assessment Scale (PQAS) scores at baseline and 3 months post-therapy. The secondary outcomes included comparisons of monthly analgesic prescription costs and opioid consumption pre- and post-therapy. Tolerability was assessed by side effect incidence.

RESULTS:

This investigation included 29 subjects. Quality of life and pain improved, measured by change in EQ-5D (Pre 36 - Post 64, P < .0001) and change in PQAS paroxysmal (Pre 6.76 - Post 2.04, P < .0001), surface (Pre 4.20 - Post 1.30, P < .0001), deep (Pre 5.87 - Post 2.03, P < .0001), unpleasant (Pre “miserable” - Post “annoying”, P < .0001). Adverse effects were reported in 10% of subjects.

DISCUSSION:

After 3 months treatment, MC improved quality of life, reduced pain and opioid use, and lead to cost savings. Large randomized clinical trials are warranted to further evaluate the role of MC in the treatment of chronic pain.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29955555

http://mhc.cpnp.org/doi/10.9740/mhc.2018.05.110

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Pain Modulation after Oromucosal Cannabinoid Spray (SATIVEX®) in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis: A Study with Quantitative Sensory Testing and Laser-Evoked Potentials.

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“Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)/cannabidiol (CBD) (nabiximols or Sativex&reg;) is an oromucosal spray formulation containing THC and CBD at an approximately 1:1 fixed ratio. Its administration for the treatment of pain in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) has been established.

MS patients generally complain of different kinds of pain, including spasticity-related and neuropathic pain. In this study, we compared and evaluated pain modulation and thermal/pain threshold of MS patients before and after THC/CBD administration.

Patients reported a significant reduction in pain.

Our results indicate that Sativex&reg; therapy provides pain relief in MS patients and suggest that it might modulate peripheral cold-sensitive TRP channels.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29933552

http://www.mdpi.com/2305-6320/5/3/59

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Medical Cannabis in Patients with Chronic Pain: Effect on Pain Relief, Pain Disability, and Psychological aspects. A Prospective Non randomized Single Arm Clinical Trial.

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“There is an increasing interest in the medical use of cannabis, particularly in the treatment of chronic pain.

OBJECTIVES:

The aim is to evaluate the effects of cannabis use and the associated benefits reported by patients with various chronic pain diagnoses.

RESULTS:

Pain intensity records a statistically significant reduction from Baseline to 12 months follow up (X² 61.375; P<0,001); the im- provements from Baseline to 12 months follow up are also recorded in pain disability (X² 39.423; P<0,001) and in anxiety and depression symptoms (X²30.362; P<0,001; X²27.786; P<0,001).

CONCLUSIONS:

Our study suggest that Cannabis therapy, as an adjun- ct a traditional analgesic therapy, can be an efficacious tool to make more effective the management of chronic pain and its consequences on functional and psychological dimension. Further randomized, controlled trials are needed to confirm our conclusions.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29938740

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The relationship of endocannabinoidome lipid mediators with pain and psychological stress in women with fibromyalgia – a case control study.

“Characterized by chronic widespread pain, generalized hyperalgesia, and psychological stress fibromyalgia (FM) is difficult to diagnose and lacks effective treatments.

The endocannabinoids – arachidonoylethanolamide (AEA), 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), and the related oleoylethanolamide (OEA), palmitoylethanolamide (PEA), and stearoylethanolamide (SEA) – are endogenous lipid mediators with analgesic and anti-inflammatory characteristics, in company with psychological modulating properties (e.g., stress and anxiety), and are included in a new emerging “ome”, the endocannabinoidome.

This case -control study compared the concentration differences of AEA, OEA, PEA, SEA, and 2-AG in 104 women with FM and 116 healthy controls (CON). All participants OEArated their pain, anxiety, depression, and current health status. The relationships between the lipid concentrations and the clinical assessments were investigated using powerful multivariate data analysis and traditional bivariate statistics. The concentrations of OEA, PEA, SEA, and 2-AG were significantly higher in FM than in CON; significance remained for OEA and SEA after controlling for BMI and age. 2-AG correlated positively with FM duration and BMI, and to some extent negatively with pain, anxiety, depression, and health status. In FM, AEA correlated positively with depression ratings.

The elevated circulating levels of endocannabinoidome lipids suggest that these lipids play a role in the complex pathophysiology of FM and might be signs of ongoing low-grade inflammation in FM. Although the investigated lipids are significantly altered in FM their biological roles are uncertain with respect to the clinical manifestations of FM. Thus, plasma lipids alone are not good biomarkers for FM.

PERSPECTIVE:

This study reports about elevated plasma levels of endocannabinoidome lipid mediators in FM. The lipids suitability to work as biomarkers for FM in the clinic were low, however their altered levels indicate that a metabolic asymmetry is ongoing in FM, which could serve as basis during explorative FM pain management.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29885369

https://www.jpain.org/article/S1526-5900(18)30197-4/fulltext

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Cannabinoid receptor type 1 in the brain regulates the affective component of visceral pain in mice.

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“Endocannabinoids acting through cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) are major modulators of peripheral somatic and visceral nociception. Although only partially studied, some evidence suggests a particular role of CB1 within the brain in nociceptive processes.

As the endocannabinoid system regulates affect and emotional behaviors, we hypothesized that cerebral CB1 influences affective processing of visceral pain-related behaviors in laboratory animals.

To study nocifensive responses modulated by supraspinal CB1, we used conditional knock-out mice lacking CB1 either in cortical glutamatergic neurons (Glu-CB1-KO), or in forebrain GABAergic neurons (GABA-CB1-KO), or in principle neurons of the forebrain (CaMK-CB1-KO). These mutant mice and mice treated with the CB1 antagonist SR141716 were tested for different pain-related behaviors. In an acetic acid-induced abdominal constriction test, supraspinal CB1 deletions did not affect nocifensive responses. In the cerulein-model of acute pancreatitis, mechanical allodynia or hyperalgesia were not changed, but Glu-CB1- and CaMK-CB1-KO mice showed significantly increased facial grimacing scores indicating increased affective responses to this noxious visceral stimulus. Similarly, these brain-specific CB1 KO mice also showed significantly changed thermal nociception in a hot-plate test.

These results reveal a novel, and important role of CB1 expressed by cortical glutamatergic neurons in the affective component of visceral nociception.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29885522

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Localization of cannabinoid receptors CB1, CB2, GPR55, and PPARα in the canine gastrointestinal tract.

Histochemistry and Cell Biology

“The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is composed of cannabinoid receptors, their endogenous ligands, and the enzymes involved in endocannabinoid turnover.

Modulating the activity of the ECS may influence a variety of physiological and pathophysiological processes.

A growing body of evidence indicates that activation of cannabinoid receptors by endogenous, plant-derived, or synthetic cannabinoids may exert beneficial effects on gastrointestinal inflammation and visceral pain.

The present ex vivo study aimed to investigate immunohistochemically the distribution of cannabinoid receptors CB1, CB2, G protein-coupled receptor 55 (GPR55), and peroxisome proliferation activation receptor alpha (PPARα) in the canine gastrointestinal tract.

Cannabinoid receptors showed a wide distribution in the gastrointestinal tract of the dog.

Since cannabinoid receptors have a protective role in inflammatory bowel disease, the present research provides an anatomical basis supporting the therapeutic use of cannabinoid receptor agonists in relieving motility disorders and visceral hypersensitivity in canine acute or chronic enteropathies.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29882158

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00418-018-1684-7

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[Cannabinoids in pain medicine]

Der Schmerz

“The endocannabinoid system (ECS) controls a large number of vital functions.

Suboptimal tone of the ECS in certain regions of the nervous system may be associated with disorders that are also associated with pain.

Pain and inflammation processes can be modulated by the exogenous supply of cannabinoids.

Low-to-moderate pain-relieving effects and in individual cases large pain-relieving effects were observed in randomized, controlled studies of various types of chronic pain. People with chronic neuropathic pain and stress symptoms seem to particularly benefit.

The therapeutic range of cannabinoids is small; often small doses are sufficient for clinically significant effects. The “Cannabis-als-Medizin-Gesetz” (cannabis as medicine law) allows the prescription of cannabis preparations under certain conditions.

Available data indicate good long-term efficacy and tolerability. However, there is little systematic long-term experience from clinical studies.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29881935

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00482-018-0299-1

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Including cannabinoids in the treatment of painful schwannomatosis.

Brain and Behavior banner

“A 47‐year‐old man, affected by Schwannomatosis, presented a very severe pain (10/10, NRS) with paroxysmal shooting episodes, allodynia, paresthesia, and dysesthesia; in parallel, the patient had lost weight (from 70 to 49 kg) and experienced fatigue and deep depression. The previous pain prescription, including opioids and antineutopathic drugs, was fully ineffective. We progressively substituted this therapy with 15 drops, 3 times/daily, of THC/CBD in a concentration ratio 5:1, equal to 15 mg of active substance each time, reaching improvement in pain intensity (6/10) and in several other aspects as mood and quality of life”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29845778  

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/brb3.1011

“Schwannomatosis is a rare genetic disorder that results in tumors (called schwannomas) that grow on the peripheral nerves throughout the body. It is recognized most often in people over the age of 30. Schwannomatosis can cause severe, debilitating pain and neurological dysfunction.”  https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/neurology_neurosurgery/centers_clinics/neurofibromatosis/schwannomatosis/index.html

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Ventilatory-depressant effects of opioids alone and in combination with cannabinoids in rhesus monkeys.

 Cover image

“Pain is a serious health problem that is commonly treated with opioids, although the doses of opioids needed to treat pain are often similar to those that decrease respiration. Combining opioids with drugs that relieve pain through non-opioid mechanisms can decrease the doses of opioids needed for analgesia, resulting in an improved therapeutic window, but only if the doses of opioids that decrease respiration are not similarly decreased. Using small doses of opioids to treat pain has the potential to reduce the number of overdoses and deaths.

This study investigated whether the cannabinoid receptor agonists Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) and CP 55,940 modify the ventilatory-depressant effects of morphine and fentanyl in three monkeys.

In summary, cannabinoid receptor agonists, which increase the potency of opioids to produce antinociception, did not increase their potency to depress ventilation. Thus, the therapeutic window is greater for opioids when they are combined with cannabinoid receptor agonists, indicating a possible advantage for these drug mixtures in treating pain.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29807027

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0014299918303108

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