Effects of short-term cannabidiol treatment on response to social stress in subjects at clinical high risk of developing psychosis.

 “Stress is a risk factor for psychosis and treatments which mitigate its harmful effects are needed.

Cannabidiol (CBD) has antipsychotic and anxiolytic effects.

OBJECTIVES:

We investigated whether CBD would normalise the neuroendocrine and anxiety responses to stress in clinical high risk for psychosis (CHR) patients.

RESULTS:

One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed a significant effect of group (HC, CHR-P, CHR-CBD (p = .005) on cortisol reactivity as well as a significant (p = .003) linear decrease. The change in cortisol associated with experimental stress exposure was greatest in HC controls and least in CHR-P patients, with CHR-CBD patients exhibiting an intermediate response. Planned contrasts revealed that the cortisol reactivity was significantly different in HC compared with CHR-P (p = .003), and in HC compared with CHR-CBD (p = .014), but was not different between CHR-P and CHR-CBD (p = .70). Across the participant groups (CHR-P, CHR-CBD and HC), changes in anxiety and experience of public speaking stress (all p’s < .02) were greatest in the CHR-P and least in the HC, with CHR-CBD participants demonstrating an intermediate level of change.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our findings show that it is worthwhile to design further well powered studies which investigate whether CBD may be used to affect cortisol response in clinical high risk for psychosis patients and any effect this may have on symptoms.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31915861

“Antipsychotic effects of CBD have been linked to its effects on levels of the endogenous cannabinoid anandamide (AEA) potentially by inhibiting its catalytic enzyme fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH). Recent preclinical work has also suggested that CBD may block the anxiogenic effects of chronic stress that was associated with a concomitant decrease in the expression of FAAH following CBD treatment. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to have investigated the effects of short-term treatment with CBD on experimentally induced stress in the context of psychosis risk. Notwithstanding its limitations, the present study provides a strong rationale for future studies to investigate whether CBD may have potential to mitigate the harmful effects of stress in the course of daily life by attenuating the altered neuroendocrine and psychological responses to acute stress in CHR participants.”

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00213-019-05442-6

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Exploiting cannabinoid and vanilloid mechanisms for epilepsy treatment.

“This review focuses on the possible roles of phytocannabinoids, synthetic cannabinoids, endocannabinoids, and “transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily V, member 1” (TRPV1) channel blockers in epilepsy treatment.

The phytocannabinoids are compounds produced by the herb Cannabis sativa, from which Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) is the main active compound. The therapeutic applications of Δ9-THC are limited, whereas cannabidiol (CBD), another phytocannabinoid, induces antiepileptic effects in experimental animals and in patients with refractory epilepsies.

Synthetic CB1 agonists induce mixed effects, which hamper their therapeutic applications. A more promising strategy focuses on compounds that increase the brain levels of anandamide, an endocannabinoid produced on-demand to counteract hyperexcitability. Thus, anandamide hydrolysis inhibitors might represent a future class of antiepileptic drugs. Finally, compounds that block the TRPV1 (“vanilloid”) channel, a possible anandamide target in the brain, have also been investigated.

In conclusion, the therapeutic use of phytocannabinoids (CBD) is already in practice, although its mechanisms of action remain unclear. Endocannabinoid and TRPV1 mechanisms warrant further basic studies to support their potential clinical applications.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31839498

“Cannabidiol is in clinical use for refractory epilepsies.”

https://www.epilepsybehavior.com/article/S1525-5050(19)30373-7/fulltext

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Alcohol Binge-Induced Cardiovascular Dysfunction Involves Endocannabinoid-CB1-R Signaling.

 JACC: Basic to Translational Science“Excessive binge alcohol drinking may adversely affect cardiovascular function. In this study we characterize the detailed hemodynamic effects of an acute alcohol binge in mice using multiple approaches and investigate the role of the endocannabinoid-cannabinoid 1 receptor (CB1-R) signaling in these effects. Acute alcohol binge was associated with elevated levels of cardiac endocannabinoid anandamide and profound cardiovascular dysfunction lasting for several hours and redistribution of circulation. These changes were attenuated by CB1-R antagonist or in CB1-R knockout mice. Our results suggest that a single alcohol binge has profound effects on the cardiovascular system, which involve endocannabinoid-CB1-R signaling.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31768478

“Alcohol is one of the most frequently used intoxicants in the United States. Binge alcohol drinking is a major contributor of emergency department visits. Binge alcohol drinking may adversely affect cardiovascular function. Here we show that acute alcohol intoxication is associated with elevated levels of cardiac endocannabinoid anandamide and profound cardiovascular dysfunction and blood redistribution lasting for several hours. The adverse cardiovascular effects of acute alcohol intoxication are attenuated by CB1-R antagonist or in CB1-R knockout mice. A single alcohol binge has profound effect on the cardiovascular system, which involves endocannabinoid-CB1-R signaling.”

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2452302X19301755?via%3Dihub

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Relieving tension: effects of cannabinoids on vagal afferent sensitivity.

Publication cover image“Endocannabinoids are produced within the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and modulate energy homeostasis and food intake, at least in part, via vagally-dependent actions. The recent paper by Christie et al., [Christie, et al. J Physiol, 2019] demonstrate, for the first time, that cannabinoids exert biphasic effects on the mechanosensitivity of tension-sensitive gastric vagal afferents. At higher concentrations, anandamide increased vagal afferent sensitivity in a CB1 and TRPV1 receptor dependent manner. At lower concentrations, however, anandamide decreased afferent mechanosensitivity; while this was also dependent upon CB1 and TRPV1 receptors, it also appeared dependent upon signaling via the potent orexigenic neurohormone, ghrelin. These results provide further evidence to support the remarkable degree of neuroplasticity within vagal afferent signaling, and suggest that untangling the complex interactions of cannabinoid effects on food intake and energy homeostasis will require careful physiological and pharmacological investigations.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31707736

https://physoc.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1113/JP279173

“A clear understanding of the mechanisms which mediate these events may provide novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders due to vago-vagal pathway malfunctions.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6318799/

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Cannabidiol increases the nociceptive threshold in a preclinical model of Parkinson’s disease.

Neuropharmacology

“Medications that improve pain threshold can be useful in the pharmacotherapy of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Pain is a prevalent PD’s non-motor symptom with a higher prevalence of analgesic drugs prescription for patients. However, specific therapy for PD-related pain are not available.

Since the endocannabinoid system is expressed extensively in different levels of pain pathway, drugs designed to target this system have promising therapeutic potential in the modulation of pain. Thus, we examined the effects of the 6-hydroxydopamine- induced PD on nociceptive responses of mice and the influence of cannabidiol (CBD) on 6-hydroxydopamine-induced nociception.

Further, we investigated the pathway involved in the analgesic effect of the CBD through the co-administration with a fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitor, increasing the endogenous anandamide levels, and possible targets from anandamide, i.e., the cannabinoid receptors subtype 1 and 2 (CB1 and CB2) and the transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1).

We report that 6-hydroxydopamine- induced parkinsonism decreases the thermal and mechanical nociceptive threshold, whereas CBD (acute and chronic treatment) reduces this hyperalgesia and allodynia evoked by 6-hydroxydopamine. Moreover, ineffective doses of either FAAH inhibitor or TRPV1 receptor antagonist potentialized the CBD-evoked antinociception while an inverse agonist of the CB1 and CB2 receptor prevented the antinociceptive effect of the CBD.

Altogether, these results indicate that CBD can be a useful drug to prevent the parkinsonism-induced nociceptive threshold reduction. They also suggest that CB1 and TRPV1 receptors are important for CBD-induced analgesia and that CBD could produce these analgesic effects increasing endogenous anandamide levels.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31706993

“The CBD treatment decreases hyperalgesia and allodynia in experimental parkinsonism.”

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0028390819303703?via%3Dihub

Image 1

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Bone Anabolic Response in the Calvaria Following Mild Traumatic Brain Injury is Mediated by the Cannabinoid-1 Receptor.

 Scientific Reports“Brain trauma was clinically associated with increased osteogenesis in the appendicular skeleton. We showed previously in C57BL/6J mice that mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) transiently induced bone formation in the femur via the cannabinoid-1 (CB1) receptor. Here, we subjected ICR mice to mTBI and examined the bone response in the skull using microCT. We also measured mast cell degranulation (MCD)72 h post-injury. Finally, we measured brain and calvarial endocannabinoids levels post-mTBI. mTBI led to decreased bone porosity on the contralateral (untouched) side. This effect was apparent both in young and mature mice. Administration of rimonabant (CB1 inverse agonist) completely abrogated the effect of mTBI on calvarial porosity and significantly reduced MCD, compared with vehicle-treated controls. We also found that mTBI resulted in elevated levels of anandamide, but not 2-arachidonoylglycerol, in the contralateral calvarial bone, whereas brain levels remained unchanged. In C57BL/6J CB1 knockout mice, mTBI did not reduce porosity but in general the porosity was significantly lower than in WT controls. Our findings suggest that mTBI induces a strain-specific CB1-dependent bone anabolic response in the skull, probably mediated by anandamide, but seemingly unrelated to inflammation. The endocannabinoid system is therefore a plausible target in management of bone response following head trauma.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31700010

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-019-51720-w

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A time-dependent contribution of hippocampal CB1, CB2, and PPARγ receptors to cannabidiol-induced disruption of fear memory consolidation.

Publication cover image“Preclinical studies have shown that cannabidiol (CBD) mitigates fear memories by facilitating their extinction or interfering with their generalization and reconsolidation. The brain regions and mechanisms underlying these effects, and their temporal window, are still poorly understood. The present paper aimed at investigating related questions in the dorsal hippocampus (DH) during contextual fear consolidation.

KEY RESULTS:

CBD impaired memory consolidation when given immediately or 1 h after fear conditioning, but not after 3 h. The DH Arc expression was reduced by systemic CBD treatment in both cases. Immediately after fear conditioning, the CBD effect was abolished by CB1 or CB2 receptor blockade, partly reduced by 5-HT1A or A2A antagonism, and remained unchanged after antagonism of PPARγ receptors. 1 h after fear conditioning, the CBD effect was only prevented by PPARγ receptor antagonism. Besides, the FAAH inhibition impaired memory consolidation when URB597 was infused immediately, but not 1 hour after fear conditioning.

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS:

CBD disrupts memory consolidation up to 1 h after fear conditioning, allowing an extended window of opportunity to mitigate aversive memories after their acquisition. The results suggest time-dependent participation of DH anandamide, CB1, CB2, and PPARγ receptors in this process.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31648363

https://bpspubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/bph.14895

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Beyond THC and Endocannabinoids.

Image result for AR Annual Reviews“Research in the cannabinoid field, namely on phytocannabinoids, the endogenous cannabinoids anandamide and 2-arachidonoyl glycerol and their metabolizing and synthetic enzymes, the cannabinoid receptors, and anandamide-like cannabinoid compounds, has expanded tremendously over the last few years. Numerous endocannabinoid-like compounds have been discovered. The Cannabis plant constituent cannabidiol (CBD) was found to exert beneficial effects in many preclinical disease models ranging from epilepsy, cardiovascular disease, inflammation, and autoimmunity to neurodegenerative and kidney diseases and cancer. CBD was recently approved in the United States for the treatment of rare forms of childhood epilepsy. This has triggered the development of many CBD-based products for human use, often with overstated claims regarding their therapeutic effects. In this article, the recently published research on the chemistry and biological effects of plant cannabinoids (specifically CBD), endocannabinoids, certain long-chain fatty acid amides, and the variety of relevant receptors is critically reviewed. ”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31580774

https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/10.1146/annurev-pharmtox-010818-021441

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Endocannabinoid system and the expression of endogenous ceramides in human hepatocellular carcinoma.

 Journal Cover“The endogenous lipid metabolism network is associated with the occurrence and progression of malignancies.

Endocannabinoids and ceramides have demonstrated their anti-proliferative and pro-apoptotic properties in a series of cancer studies.

The aim of the present study was to evaluate the expression patterns of endocannabinoids and endogenous ceramides in 67 pairs of human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) tissues and non-cancerous counterpart controls.

Anandamide (AEA), the major endocannabinoid, was reduced in tumor tissues, probably due to the high expression and activity of fatty acid amide hydrolase. Another important endocannabinoid, 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG), was elevated in tumor tissues compared with non-tumor controls, indicating that the biosynthesis of 2-AG is faster than the degradation of 2-AG in tumor cells.

Furthermore, western blot analysis demonstrated that cannabinoid receptor 1 was downregulated, while cannabinoid receptor 2 was elevated in HCC tissues, in accordance with the alterations in the levels of AEA and 2-AG, respectively. For HCC tissues, the expression levels of C18:0, 20:0 and 24:0-ceramides decreased significantly, whereas C12:0, 16:0, 18:1 and 24:1-ceramides were upregulated, which may be associated with cannabinoid receptor activation and stearoyl-CoA desaturase protein downregulation.

The exact role of endocannabinoids and ceramides in regulating the fate of HCC cells requires further investigation.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31423220

https://www.spandidos-publications.com/10.3892/ol.2019.10399

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Childhood trauma and being at-risk for psychosis are associated with higher peripheral endocannabinoids.

Image result for Psychological Medicine “Evidence has been accumulating regarding alterations in components of the endocannabinoid system in patients with psychosis.

Of all the putative risk factors associated with psychosis, being at clinical high-risk for psychosis (CHR) has the strongest association with the onset of psychosis, and exposure to childhood trauma has been linked to an increased risk of development of psychotic disorder.

We aimed to investigate whether being at-risk for psychosis and exposure to childhood trauma were associated with altered endocannabinoid levels.

RESULTS:

Individuals with both CHR and experience of childhood trauma had higher N-palmitoylethanolamine (p < 0.001) and anandamide (p < 0.001) levels in peripheral blood compared to healthy controls (HC) and those with no childhood trauma. There was also a significant correlation between N-palmitoylethanolamine levels and symptoms as well as childhood trauma.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our results suggest an association between CHR and/or childhood maltreatment and elevated endocannabinoid levels in peripheral blood, with a greater alteration in those with both CHR status and history of childhood maltreatment compared to those with either of those risks alone. Furthermore, endocannabinoid levels increased linearly with the number of risk factors and elevated endocannabinoid levels correlated with the severity of CHR symptoms and extent of childhood maltreatment. Further studies in larger cohorts, employing longitudinal designs are needed to confirm these findings and delineate the precise role of endocannabinoid alterations in the pathophysiology of psychosis.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31422779

https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/psychological-medicine/article/childhood-trauma-and-being-atrisk-for-psychosis-are-associated-with-higher-peripheral-endocannabinoids/BFFDA252EF2250C2F2B45786CC152CDC

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