Cannabinoid Receptor 2 Participates in Amyloid-β Processing in a Mouse Model of Alzheimer’s Disease but Plays a Minor Role in the Therapeutic Properties of a Cannabis-Based Medicine.

“The endogenous cannabinoid system represents a promising therapeutic target to modify neurodegenerative pathways linked to Alzheimer’s disease (AD).

The aim of the present study was to evaluate the specific contribution of CB2 receptor to the progression of AD-like pathology and its role in the positive effect of a cannabis-based medicine (1:1 combination of Δ9-tetrahidrocannabinol and cannabidiol) previously demonstrated to be beneficial in the AβPP/PS1 transgenic model of the disease.

A new mouse strain was generated by crossing AβPP/PS1 transgenic mice with CB2 knockout mice. Results show that lack of CB2 exacerbates cortical Aβ deposition and increases the levels of soluble Aβ40. However, CB2 receptor deficiency does not affect the viability of AβPP/PS1 mice, does not accelerate their memory impairment, does not modify tau hyperphosphorylation in dystrophic neurites associated to Aβ plaques, and does not attenuate the positive cognitive effect induced by the cannabis-based medicine in these animals.

These findings suggest a minor role for the CB2 receptor in the therapeutic effect of the cannabis-based medicine in AβPP/PS1 mice, but also constitute evidence of a link between CB2 receptor and Aβ processing.”

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The Endocannabinoid System in the Retina: From Physiology to Practical and Therapeutic Applications.

“Cannabis is one of the most prevalent drugs used in industrialized countries.

The main effects of Cannabis are mediated by two major exogenouscannabinoids: ∆9-tetrahydroxycannabinol and cannabidiol. They act on specific endocannabinoid receptors, especially types 1 and 2.

Mammals are endowed with a functional cannabinoid system including cannabinoid receptors, ligands, and enzymes.

This endocannabinoid signaling pathway is involved in both physiological and pathophysiological conditions with a main role in the biology of the central nervous system.

As the retina is a part of the central nervous system due to its embryonic origin, we aim at providing the relevance of studying the endocannabinoid system in the retina. Here, we review the distribution of the cannabinoid receptors, ligands, and enzymes in the retina and focus on the role of the cannabinoid system in retinal neurobiology.

This review describes the presence of the cannabinoid system in critical stages of retinal processing and its broad involvement in retinal neurotransmission, neuroplasticity, and neuroprotection.

Accordingly, we support the use of synthetic cannabinoids as new neuroprotective drugs to prevent and treat retinal diseases.

Finally, we argue for the relevance of functional retinal measures in cannabis users to evaluate the impact of cannabis use on human retinal processing.”

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Cannabidiol Oil for Decreasing Addictive Use of Marijuana: A Case Report.

“This case study illustrates the use of cannabidiol (CBD) oil to decrease the addictive use of marijuana and provide anxiolytic and sleep benefits.

The second most abundant component-CBD-has been suggested to have the medicinal effects of decreasing anxiety, improving sleep, and other neuro-protective effects.

The mechanism of action for CBD has been suggested to be antagonistic to the psychoactive properties of THC in many locations within the central nervous system. Such action raises the issue of whether it might be beneficial to use CBD in isolation to facilitate withdrawal of marijuana use.

With use of the CBD oil, the patient reported being less anxious, as well as settling into a regular pattern of sleep. He also indicated that he had not used any marijuana since starting the CBD oil. With the decrease in the dosage to 18 mg, the patient was able to maintain his nonuse of marijuana.”

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Peripubertal treatment with cannabidiol prevents the emergence of psychosis in an animal model of schizophrenia

“Currently, the pharmacotherapy of schizophrenia is still associated with significant side effects and high rates of treatment resistance, causing a great deal of suffering to patients and their caregivers. Developing safe interventions able to prevent the emergence of full-blown psychosis would therefore represent a major advance.

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychotomimetic compound of Cannabis sativa that presents antipsychotic properties in animal models and humans.

However, despite the growing evidence of CBD’s neuroprotective effects and therapeutic application in schizophrenia, so far no study has addressed its potential as a preventive intervention.”

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Therapeutic Potential of Cannabinoids in Psychosis.

“Over recent years, the interest in the endocannabinoid system (ECS) as a new target for the treatment of schizophrenia has evolved.

The ECS represents one of the most relevant neurotransmitter systems in the brain and mainly fulfills a homeostatic role in terms of neurotransmission but also with respect to inflammatory processes.

Two main approaches to the modulation of endocannabinoid functioning have been chosen so far. First, the selective blockade or inverse agonism of the type 1 cannabinoid receptor has been tested for the improvement of acute psychotic symptoms, as well as for the improvement of cognitive functions in schizophrenia.

Second, the modulation of endocannabinoid levels by use of the phytocannabinoid cannabidiol and selective fatty acid amide hydrolase inhibitors has been proposed, and the antipsychotic properties of cannabidiol are currently being investigated in humans.

Unfortunately, for most of these trials that have focused on psychopathological and cognitive effects of cannabidiol, no published data are available. However, there is first evidence that cannabidiol may ameliorate psychotic symptoms with a superior side-effect profile compared with established antipsychotics.

In conclusion, several clinical trials targeting the ECS in acute schizophrenia have either been completed or are underway. Although publicly available results are currently limited, preliminary data indicate that selected compounds modulating the ECS may be effective in acute schizophrenia.

Nevertheless, so far, sample sizes of patients investigated are not sufficient to come to a final judgment, and no maintenance studies are available to ensure long-term efficacy and safety.”

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Cannabidiol, neuroprotection and neuropsychiatric disorders.

“Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychotomimetic phytocannabinoid derived from Cannabis sativa.

It has possible therapeutic effects over a broad range of neuropsychiatric disorders.

CBD attenuates brain damage associated with neurodegenerative and/or ischemic conditions.

It also has positive effects on attenuating psychotic-, anxiety- and depressive-like behaviors.

Moreover, CBD affects synaptic plasticity and facilitates neurogenesis.

The mechanisms of these effects are still not entirely clear but seem to involve multiple pharmacological targets.

In the present review, we summarized the main biochemical and molecular mechanisms that have been associated with the therapeutic effects of CBD, focusing on their relevance to brain function, neuroprotection and neuropsychiatric disorders.”

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Cannabidiol disrupts the reconsolidation of contextual drug-associated memories in Wistar rats.

“In addicts, craving and relapse are frequently induced by the recall of memories related to a drug experience. Several studies have demonstrated that drug-related memories are reactivated after exposure to environmental cues and may undergo reconsolidation, a process that can strengthen memories. Thus, reactivation of mnemonic traces provides an opportunity for disrupting memories that contribute to the pathological cycle of addiction.

Here we used drug-induced conditioned place preference (CPP) to investigate whether cannabidiol (CBD), a phytocannabinoid, given just after reactivation sessions, would affect reconsolidation of drug-reward memory, reinstatement of morphine-CPP, or conditioned place aversion precipitated by naltrexone in Wistar rats.

We found that CBD impaired the reconsolidation of preference for the environment previously paired with both morphine and cocaine. This disruption seems to be persistent, as the preference did not return after further reinstatement induced by priming drug and stress reinstatement.

Moreover, in an established morphine-CPP, an injection of CBD after the exposure to a conditioning session led to a significant reduction of both morphine-CPP and subsequent conditioned place aversion precipitated by naltrexone in the same context.

Thus, established memories induced by a drug of abuse can be blocked after reactivation of the drug experience.

Taken together, these results provide evidence for the disruptive effect of CBD on reconsolidation of contextual drug-related memories and highlight its therapeutic potential to attenuate contextual memories associated with drugs of abuse and consequently to reduce the risk of relapse.”

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Cannabinoids for pediatric epilepsy? Up in smoke or real science?

“Public interest in the use of “medical marijuana” for the treatment of childhood epilepsy has burgeoned in the last few years. This has occurred in parallel with a growing interest in “medical marijuana” in general. Physicians and pediatricians must balance their patients’ desire for immediate access to these products with the tenets of evidence-based medicine. This review discusses the biochemistry of cannabis products (the phytocannabinoids) setting this in the context of the endogenous endocannabinoid system. The differing and potentially modulating effects of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are reviewed. The evidence-base supporting or not the use of cannabis products for the treatment of neurological disease and specifically epilepsy is explored. The potential for adverse effects and particularly of neurotoxicity is addressed. Finally, public health and sociocultural implications are touched upon. Specific recommendations for interested physicians are provided including advocacy for patients and for a change in the “scheduling” of cannabis in order to better foster much-needed high-quality scientific research in this important area.”

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Antidepressant-like effect of cannabidiol injection into the ventral medial prefrontal cortex – possible involvement of 5-HT1A and CB1 receptors.

“Systemic administration of Cannabidiol (CBD), the main non-psychotomimetic constituent of Cannabis sativa, induces antidepressant-like effects.

The mechanism of action of CBD is thought to involve the activation of 5-HT1A receptors and the modulation of endocannabinoid levels with subsequent CB1 activation…

Administration of CBD into the vmPFC induces antidepressant-like effects possibly through indirect activation of CB1 and 5-HT1A receptors.”

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CBD-enriched medical cannabis for intractable pediatric epilepsy: The current Israeli experience.

“To describe the experience of five Israeli pediatric epilepsy clinics treating children and adolescents diagnosed as having intractable epilepsy with a regimen of medical cannabis oil.

A retrospective study describing the effect of cannabidiol (CBD)-enriched medical cannabis on children with epilepsy.

The cohort included 74 patients (age range 1-18 years) with intractable epilepsy resistant to >7 antiepileptic drugs. Forty-nine (66%) also failed a ketogenic diet, vagal nerve stimulator implantation, or both.

They all started medical cannabis oil treatment between 2-11/2014 and were treated for at least 3 months (average 6 months).

The selected formula contained CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol at a ratio of 20:1 dissolved in olive oil. The CBD dose ranged from 1 to 20mg/kg/d. Seizure frequency was assessed by parental report during clinical visits.

CBD treatment yielded a significant positive effect on seizure load.

Most of the children (66/74, 89%) reported reduction in seizure frequency: 13 (18%) reported 75-100% reduction, 25 (34%) reported 50-75% reduction, 9 (12%) reported 25-50% reduction, and 19 (26%) reported <25% reduction. Five (7%) patients reported aggravation of seizures which led to CBD withdrawal.

In addition, we observed improvement in behavior and alertness, language, communication, motor skills and sleep. Adverse reactions included somnolence, fatigue, gastrointestinal disturbances and irritability leading to withdrawal of cannabis use in 5 patients.


The results of this multicenter study on CBD treatment for intractable epilepsy in a population of children and adolescents are highly promising. Further prospective, well-designed clinical trials using enriched CBD medical cannabis are warranted.”

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