Regulation of noradrenergic and serotonergic systems by cannabinoids: relevance to cannabinoid-induced effects.

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“The cannabinoid system is composed of Gi/o protein-coupled cannabinoid type 1 receptor (CB1) and cannabinoid type 2 (CB2) receptor and endogenous compounds. The CB1 receptor is widely distributed in the central nervous system (CNS) and it is involved in the regulation of common physiological functions. At the neuronal level, the CB1 receptor is mainly placed at GABAergic and glutamatergic axon terminals, where it modulates excitatory and inhibitory synapses. To date, the involvement of CB2 receptor in the regulation of neurotransmission in the CNS has not been clearly shown. The majority of noradrenergic (NA) cells in mammalian tissues are located in the locus coeruleus (LC) while serotonergic (5-HT) cells are mainly distributed in the raphe nuclei including the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN). In the CNS, NA and 5-HT systems play a crucial role in the control of pain, mood, arousal, sleep-wake cycle, learning/memory, anxiety, and rewarding behaviour. This review summarizes the electrophysiological, neurochemical and behavioural evidences for modulation of the NA/5-HT systems by cannabinoids and the CB1 receptor. Cannabinoids regulate the neuronal activity of NA and 5-HT cells and the release of NA and 5-HT by direct and indirect mechanisms. The interaction between cannabinoid and NA/5-HT systems may underlie several behavioural changes induced by cannabis such as anxiolytic and antidepressant effects or side effects (e.g. disruption of attention). Further research is needed to better understand different aspects of NA and 5-HT systems regulation by cannabinoids, which would be relevant for their use in therapeutics.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29169951

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0024320517306069

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Cannabinoid Receptor-Related Orphan G Protein-Coupled Receptors.

Elsevier

“Of the druggable group of G protein-coupled receptors in the human genome, a number remain which have yet to be paired with an endogenous ligand-orphan GPCRs. Among these 100 or so entities, 3 have been linked to the cannabinoid system. GPR18, GPR55, and GPR119 exhibit limited sequence homology with the established CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors. However, the pharmacology of these orphan receptors displays overlap with CB1 and CB2 receptors, particularly for GPR18 and GPR55. The linking of GPR119 to the cannabinoid receptors is less convincing and emanates from structural similarities of endogenous ligands active at these GPCRs, but which do not cross-react. This review describes the evidence for describing these orphan GPCRs as cannabinoid receptor-like receptors.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28826536

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1054358917300418?via%3Dihub

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Modulation of Astrocyte Activity by Cannabidiol, a Nonpsychoactive Cannabinoid.

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“The astrocytes have gained in recent decades an enormous interest as a potential target for neurotherapies, due to their essential and pleiotropic roles in brain physiology and pathology. Their precise regulation is still far from understood, although several candidate molecules/systems arise as promising targets for astrocyte-mediated neuroregulation and/or neuroprotection.

The cannabinoid system and its ligands have been shown to interact and affect activities of astrocytes. Cannabidiol (CBD) is the main non-psychotomimetic cannabinoid derived from Cannabis. CBD is devoid of direct CB1 and CB2 receptor activity, but exerts a number of important effects in the brain. Here, we attempt to sum up the current findings on the effects of CBD on astrocyte activity, and in this way on central nervous system (CNS) functions, across various tested models and neuropathologies.

The collected data shows that increased astrocyte activity is suppressed in the presence of CBD in models of ischemia, Alzheimer-like and Multiple-Sclerosis-like neurodegenerations, sciatic nerve injury, epilepsy, and schizophrenia. Moreover, CBD has been shown to decrease proinflammatory functions and signaling in astrocytes.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28788104

http://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/18/8/1669

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Cannabinoid system of dorsomedial telencephalon modulates behavioral responses to noxious stimulation in the fish Leporinus macrocephalus.

Physiology & Behavior

“Fish dorsomedial telencephalon has been considered a pallial region homologous to mammals amygdala, being considered a possible substrate for nociception modulation in this animal group. The present study aimed to evaluate the participation of the cannabinoid system of Dm telencephalon on nociception modulation in the fish Leporinus macrocephalus. We demonstrated that cannabidiol microinjection in Dm telecephalon inhibits the behavioral nociceptive response to the subcutaneous injection of 3% formaldehyde, and this antinociception is blocked by previous treatment with AM251 microinjection. Furthermore, AM251 microinjection in Dm prior to restraint stress also blockades the stress-induced antinociception. These results reinforce the hypothesis that this pallial telencephalic structure has a pivotal role in nociception modulation in fish.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28754268

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031938417302299?via%3Dihub

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Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol decreases masticatory muscle sensitization in female rats through peripheral cannabinoid receptor activation.

European Journal of Pain

“This study investigated whether intramuscular injection of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), by acting on peripheral cannabinoid (CB) receptors, could decrease nerve growth factor (NGF)-induced sensitization in female rat masseter muscle; a model which mimics the symptoms of myofascial temporomandibular disorders.

It was found that CB1 and CB2 receptors are expressed by trigeminal ganglion neurons that innervate the masseter muscle and also on their peripheral endings.

These results suggest that reduced inhibitory input from the peripheral cannabinoid system may contribute to NGF-induced local myofascial sensitization of mechanoreceptors. Peripheral application of THC may counter this effect by activating the CB1 receptors on masseter muscle mechanoreceptors to provide analgesic relief without central side effects.

SIGNIFICANCE:

Our results suggest THC could reduce masticatory muscle pain through activating peripheral CB1 receptors. Peripheral application of cannabinoids could be a novel approach to provide analgesic relief without central side effects.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28722246

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ejp.1085/abstract

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Anticonvulsant effect of cannabinoid receptor agonists in models of seizures in developing rats.

Epilepsia

“Although drugs targeting the cannabinoid system (e.g., CB1 receptor agonists) display anticonvulsant efficacy in adult animal models of seizures/epilepsy, they remain unexplored in developing animal models. However, cannabinoid system functions emerge early in development, providing a rationale for targeting this system in neonates.

We examined the therapeutic potential of drugs targeting the cannabinoid system in three seizure models in developing rats.

The mixed CB1/2 agonist and the CB1-specific agonist, but no other drugs, displayed anticonvulsant effects against clonic seizures in the DMCM model. By contrast, both CB1 and CB2 antagonism increased seizure severity. Similarly, we found that the CB1/2 agonist displayed antiseizure efficacy against acute hypoxia-induced seizures (automatisms, clonic and tonic-clonic seizures) and tonic-clonic seizures evoked by PTZ.

Early life seizures represent a significant cause of morbidity, with 30-40% of infants and children with epilepsy failing to achieve seizure remission with current pharmacotherapy. Identification of new therapies for neonatal/infantile epilepsy syndromes is thus of high priority.

These data indicate that the anticonvulsant action of the CB system is specific to CB1 receptor activation during early development and provide justification for further examination of CB1 receptor agonists as novel antiepileptic drugs targeting epilepsy in infants and children.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28691158

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/epi.13842/abstract

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Brain cannabinoid systems as targets for the therapy of neurological disorders.

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“Unprecedented developments in cannabinoid research within the past decade include discovery of a brain (CB1) and peripheral (CB2) receptor; endogenous ligands, anandamide, and 2-arachidonylglycerol; cannabinoid drug-induced partial and inverse agonism at CB1 receptors, antagonism of NMDA receptors and glutamate, and antioxidant activity; and preferential CB1 receptor localization in areas subserving spasticity, pain, abnormal involuntary movements, seizures, and amnesia. These endogenous structures and chemicals and mechanisms are potentially new pathophysiologic substrates, and targets for novel cannabinoid treatments, of several neurological disorders.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9974182 

“Endocannabinoid System in Neurological Disorders.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27364363
“Cannabinoids in the Treatment of Neurological Disorders” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4604187/
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Activation of cannabinoid receptors elicits antidepressant-like effects in a mouse model of social isolation stress.

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“Social isolation stress (SIS) paradigm is a chronic stress procedure able to induce profound behavioral and neurochemical changes in rodents and evokes depressive and anxiety-like behaviors.

Recent studies demonstrated that the cannabinoid system plays a key role in behavioral abnormalities such as depression through different pathways; however, there is no evidence showing a relation between SIS and the cannabinoid system.

This study investigated the role of the cannabinoid system in depressive-like behavior and anxiety-like behavior of IC animals.

Our findings suggest that the cannabinoid system is involved in depressive-like behaviors induced by SIS.

We showed that activation of cannabinoid receptors (type 1 and 2) could mitigate depression-like behavior induced by SIS in a mouse model.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28161196

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Antihyperalgesic effect of CB1 receptor activation involves the modulation of P2X3 receptor in the primary afferent neuron.

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“Cannabinoid system is a potential target for pain control.

Cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) activation play a role in the analgesic effect of cannabinoids once it is expressed in primary afferent neurons.

This study investigates whether the anti-hyperalgesic effect of CB1receptor activation involves P2×3 receptor in primary afferent neurons.

Our data suggest that the analgesic effect of CB1 receptor activation is mediated by a negative modulation of the P2×3 receptor in the primary afferent neurons.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28131783

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Decreased CB receptor binding and cannabinoid signaling in three brain regions of a rat model of schizophrenia.

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“Schizophrenia is a serious mental health disorder characterized by several behavioral and biochemicel abnormalities.

In a previous study we have shown that mu-opioid (MOP) receptor signaling is impaired in specific brain regions of our three-hit animal model of schizophrenia. Since the cannabinoid system is significantly influenced in schizophrenic patients, in the present work we investigated cannabinoid (CB) receptor binding and G-protein activation in cortical, subcortical and cerebellar regions of control and ‘schizophrenic’ rats.

Taken together, in all three brain areas of model rats both cannabinoid receptor binding and cannabinoid agonist-mediated G-protein activation were regularly decreased.

Our results revealed that besides the opioids, the endocannabinoid – cannabis receptor system also shows impairment in our rat model, increasing its face validity and translational utility.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27639959

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