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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A Novel Highly Selective Cannabinoid CB2 Agonist Reduces in Vitro Growth and TGF-beta Release of Human Glial Cell Tumors.

“Cannabinoid receptors have been detected in human gliomas and cannabinoids have been proposed as novel drug candidates in the treatment of brain tumors.

Aim of this study was to test the in vitro antitumor activity of COR167, a novel cannabinoid CB2-selective agonist displaying high binding affinity for human CB2 receptors, on tumor cells isolated from human glioblastoma multiforme and anaplastic astrocytoma.

RESULTS:

COR167 was found to significantly reduce the proliferation of both glioblastoma and anaplastic astrocytoma in a dose-dependent manner at lower doses than other known, less specific CB2 agonists. This activity is independent of apoptosis and is associated with significant reduction of TGF-beta 1 and 2 levels in supernatants of glioma cell cultures.

CONCLUSIONS:

These findings add to the role of cannabinoid CB2 receptor as a possible pharmacological target to counteract glial tumor growth and encourage further work to explore any other pharmacological effect of this novel CB2 agonist useful in the treatment of human gliomas.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31549596

http://www.eurekaselect.com/175066/article

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Potential of Cannabinoid Receptor Ligands as Treatment for Substance Use Disorders.

 “Substance use disorder (SUD) is a major public health crisis worldwide, and effective treatment options are limited.

During the past 2 decades, researchers have investigated the impact of a variety of pharmacological approaches to treat SUD, one of which is the use of medical cannabis or cannabinoids.

Significant progress was made with the discovery of rimonabant, a selective CB1 receptor (CB1R) antagonist (also an inverse agonist), as a promising therapeutic for SUDs and obesity. However, serious adverse effects such as depression and suicidality led to the withdrawal of rimonabant (and almost all other CB1R antagonists/inverse agonists) from clinical trials worldwide in 2008.

Since then, much research interest has shifted to other cannabinoid-based strategies, such as peripheral CB1R antagonists/inverse agonists, neutral CB1R antagonists, allosteric CB1R modulators, CB2R agonists, fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitors, monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) inhibitors, fatty acid binding protein (FABP) inhibitors, or nonaddictive phytocannabinoids with CB1R or CB2R-binding profiles, as new therapeutics for SUDs.

In this article, we first review recent progress in research regarding the endocannabinoid systems, cannabis reward versus aversion, and the underlying receptor mechanisms. We then review recent progress in cannabinoid-based medication development for the treatment of SUDs.

As evidence continues to accumulate, neutral CB1R antagonists (such as AM4113), CB2R agonists (JWH133, Xie2-64), and nonselective phytocannabinoids (cannabidiol, β-caryophyllene, ∆9-tetrahydrocannabivarin) have shown great therapeutic potential for SUDs, as shown in experimental animals.

Several cannabinoid-based medications (e.g., dronabinol, nabilone, PF-04457845) that entered clinical trials have shown promising results in reducing withdrawal symptoms in cannabis and opioid users.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31549358

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs40263-019-00664-w

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Selective Cannabinoid 2 Receptor Agonists as Potential Therapeutic Drugs for the Treatment of Endotoxin-Induced Uveitis.

molecules-logo“The cannabinoid 2 receptor (CB2R) is a promising anti-inflammatory drug target and development of selective CB2R ligands may be useful for treating sight-threatening ocular inflammation. This study examined the pharmacology of three novel chemically-diverse selective CB2R ligands. These unique ligands are potent and selective for CB2R and have good immunomodulating actions in the eye. The data generated with these three structurally-diverse and highly-selective CB2R agonists support selective targeting of CB2R for treating ocular inflammatory diseases.”
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31540271
https://www.mdpi.com/1420-3049/24/18/3338

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The Impact of Cannabinoid Receptor 2 Deficiency on Neutrophil Recruitment and Inflammation.

View details for DNA and Cell Biology cover image“Neutrophil trafficking into damaged or infected tissues is essential for the initiation of inflammation, clearance of pathogens and damaged cells, and ultimately tissue repair. Neutrophil recruitment is highly dependent on the stepwise induction of adhesion molecules and promigratory chemokines and cytokines.

A number of studies in animal models have shown the efficacy of cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2) agonists in limiting inflammation in a range of preclinical models of inflammation, including colitis, atherosclerosis, multiple sclerosis, and ischemia-reperfusion injury.

Recent work in preclinical models of inflammation raises two questions: by what mechanisms do CB2 agonists provide anti-inflammatory effects during acute inflammation and what challenges exist in the translation of CB2 modulating therapeutics into the clinic.”

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Interplay of liver-heart inflammatory axis and cannabinoid 2 receptor signalling in an experimental model of hepatic cardiomyopathy.

Publication cover image“Hepatic cardiomyopathy, a special type of heart failure develops in up to 50% of patients with cirrhosis and is a major determinant of survival. However, there is no reliable model of hepatic cardiomyopathy in mice. Herein we aimed to characterize the detailed hemodynamics of mice with bile-duct ligation (BDL)-induced liver fibrosis, by monitoring echocardiography and intracardiac pressure-volume (PV) relationships and myocardial structural alterations. Treatment of mice with a selective cannabinoid-2 receptor (CB2 -R) agonist, known to attenuate inflammation and fibrosis, was used to explore the impact of liver inflammation, fibrosis on cardiac function.

MAIN RESULTS:

BDL induced massive inflammation (increased leukocyte infiltration, inflammatory cytokines and chemokines), oxidative stress, microvascular dysfunction, and fibrosis in the liver. These pathological changes were accompanied by impaired diastolic, systolic and macrovascular functions, cardiac inflammation (increased MIP1, interleukin-1, P-selectin, CD45+ cells) and oxidative stress (increased malondialdehyde, 3-nitrotyrosine and NADPH-oxidases). CB2 -R up-regulation was observed both in livers and hearts of mice exposed to BDL. CB2 -R activation markedly improved hepatic inflammation, impaired microcirculation, fibrosis. CB2 -R activation also decreased serum TNF-alpha levels, and improved cardiac dysfunction, myocardial inflammation and oxidative stress underlining the importance of inflammatory mediators in the pathology of hepatic cardiomyopathy.

CONCLUSION:

We propose BDL-induced cardiomyopathy in mice as a model for hepatic/cirrhotic cardiomyopathy. This cardiomyopathy, similarly to cirrhotic cardiomyopathy in humans, is characterized by systemic hypotension, impaired macro- and microvascular function accompanied by both systolic and diastolic dysfunction. Our results indicate that the liver-heart inflammatory axis has a pivotal pathophysiological role in the development of hepatic cardiomyopathy. Thus, controlling liver and/or myocardial inflammation (e.g. with selective CB2-R agonists) may delay/prevent the development of cardiomyopathy in severe liver disease. ”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31469200

https://aasldpubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/hep.30916

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Δ8 -Tetrahydrocannabivarin has potent anti-nicotine effects in multiple rodent models of nicotine dependence.

British Journal of Pharmacology banner“Both types of cannabinoid receptors – CB1 and CB2 – regulate brain functions relating to addictive drug-induced reward and relapse. CB1 receptor antagonists and CB2 receptor agonists have anti-addiction efficacy, in animal models, against a broad range of addictive drugs.

Δ9 -Tetrahydrocannabivarin (Δ9 -THCV) – a cannabis constituent – acts as a CB1 antagonist and a CB2 agonist. Δ8 -Tetrahydrocannabivarin (Δ8 -THCV) is a Δ9 -THCV analogue with similar combined CB1 antagonist/CB2agonist properties.

KEY RESULTS:

Δ8 -THCV significantly attenuated intravenous nicotine self-administration, and both cue-induced and nicotine-induced relapse to nicotine-seeking behavior in rats. Δ8 -THCV also significantly attenuated nicotine-induced conditioned place preference and nicotine withdrawal in mice.

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS:

We conclude that Δ8 -THCV may have therapeutic potential for the treatment of nicotine dependence. We also suggest that tetrahydrocannabivarins should be tested for possible anti-addiction efficacy in a broader range of preclinical animal models, against other addictive drugs, and eventually in humans.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31454413

https://bpspubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/bph.14844

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Activation of Cannabinoid Receptors Promote Periodontal Cell Adhesion and Migration.

Journal of Clinical Periodontology banner“Medical and recreational cannabis use is increasing significantly, but its impacts on oral health remains unclear.

The aim of this study is to investigate the effects of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the major active component in cannabis, on periodontal fibroblast cell adhesion and migration to explore its role in periodontal regeneration and wound healing.

RESULTS:

Both CB1 and CB2 were expressed in periodontal tissues but with different expression patterns. THC promoted periodontal cell wound healing by inducing HPLF cell adhesion and migration. This was mediated by focal adhesion kinase (FAK) activation and its modulation of MAPK activities. The effect of cannabinoids on periodontal fibroblast cell adhesion and migration were mainly dependent on the CB2.

CONCLUSION:

These results suggested that cannabinoids may contribute to developing new therapeutics for periodontal regeneration and wound healing.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31461164

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jcpe.13190

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Therapeutic potential of cannabinoid receptor 2 in the treatment of diabetes mellitus and its complications.

European Journal of Pharmacology“The biological effects of endocannabinoid system are mediated by two types of receptors, cannabinoid 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid 2 receptor (CB2). They play a pivotal role in the management of pain, inflammation, cancer, obesity and diabetes mellitus.

CB2 receptor activity downregulation is hallmark of inflammation and oxidative stress. Strong evidence display the relation between activation of CB2 receptors with decrease in the pro-inflammatory cytokines and pro-apoptotic factors. Numerous in vitro and in vivo studies have been validated to confirm the role of CB2 receptor in the management of obesity, hyperlipidemia and diabetes mellitus by regulating glucose and lipid metabolism.

Activation of CB2 receptor has led to reduction of inflammatory cytokines; tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), Interleukin 6 (IL-6), Nuclear factor kappa beta (NF-κβ) and also amelioration of reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species playing role in apoptosis. Many studies confirmed the role of CB2 receptors in the insulin secretion via facilitating calcium entry into the pancreatic β-cells. CB2 receptors also displayed improvement in the neuronal and renal functions by decreasing the oxidative stress and downregulating inflammatory cascade.

The present review addresses, potential role of CB2 receptor activation in management of diabetes and its complications. It also includes the role of CB2 receptors as an anti-oxidant, anti-apoptotic and anti-inflammatory for the treatment of DM and its complications. Also, an informative summary of CB2 receptor agonist drugs is provided with their potential role in the reduction of glucose levels, increment in the insulin levels, decrease in the hyperglycaemic oxidative stress and inflammation.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31461639

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0014299919305801?via%3Dihub

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The protective effect of cannabinoid type 2 receptor activation on renal ischemia-reperfusion injury.

“Kidney ischemia reperfusion (IR) injury is an important health problem resulting in acute renal failure. After IR, the inflammatory and apoptotic process is triggered.

The relation of Cannabinoid type 2 (CB2) receptor with inflammatory and apoptotic process has been determined. The CB2 receptor has been shown to be localized in glomeruli and tubules in human and rat kidney. Activation of CB2 receptor with JWH-133 has been shown to reduce apoptosis and inflammation.

In this study, it was investigated whether CB2 activation with selective CB2 receptor agonist JWH-133 was protective against renal IR injury.

We found that JWH-133 and CB2 receptor activation had a curative effect against kidney IR damage. JWH-133 may be a new therapeutic agent in preventing kidney IR damage.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31446615

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11010-019-03616-6

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