“Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a debilitating condition highly comorbid with depression. The endocannabinoid (eCB) system and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) are suggestively involved in both disorders.
We examined whether cannabinoids can prevent the long-term depressive-like symptoms induced by exposure to the shock and situational reminders (SRs) model of PTSD. The CB1/2 receptor agonist WIN55,212-2 (0.5 mg/kg; i.p.), the fatty acid hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitor URB597 (0.3 mg/kg, i.p.) or vehicle were administered 2 h after severe shock.
Cannabinoids prevented the shock/SRs-induced alterations in social recognition memory, locomotion, passive coping, anxiety-like behavior, anhedonia, fear retrieval, fear extinction and startle response as well as the decrease in BDNF levels in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex (PFC). Furthermore, significant correlations were found between depressive-like behaviors and BDNF levels in the brain.
The findings suggest that cannabinoids may prevent both depressive- and PTSD-like symptoms following exposure to severe stress and that alterations in BDNF levels in the brains’ fear circuit are involved in these effects.”
“In the past decade, remarkable advances have been made in cannabinoid (CB) research. The brain endocannabinoid (eCB) system modulates several neurobiological processes and its dysfunction is suggested to be involved in the pathophysiology of mood and drug use disorders.
The CB1 receptor–mediated signaling, in particular, has been shown to play a critical role in the neural circuitry that mediates mood, motivation, and emotional behaviors. This chapter presents the data pertaining to the involvement of the eCB system in depression, suicide, and alcohol addiction.
It appears that the eCB system might have a critical role in the regulation of mood and emotional responses that are impaired in patients with depression and suicidal behavior.
The data provided in this chapter support the notion that the eCB system might be an additional target for the development of a drug against alcohol use, depression, and suicidal behavior.
Among therapeutic agents, antidepressants are the most widely used drugs for the treatment of depression-related disorders.”
“Antidepressant-like effect of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol and other cannabinoids isolated from cannabis sativa L. The antidepressant action of cannabis as well as the interaction between antidepressants and the endocannabinoid system has been reported. Results of this study show that Δ9-THC and other cannabinoids exert anti-depressant-like actions, and thus may contribute to the overall mood-elevating properties of cannabis.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2866040/
“The objective was to measure endocannabinoid (eCB) ligands and non-cannabinoid N-acylethanolamine (NAE) molecules in plasma from individuals with burning mouth syndrome (BMS), and to determine if plasma eCB/NAE levels correlated with pain, inflammation and depressive symptomatology in this cohort.
Plasma levels of PEA, but not OEA, AEA or 2-AG, were significantly elevated in patients with BMS, when compared to plasma from healthy individuals. Plasma PEA, OEA and AEA levels correlated with depressive symptomatology.
This is the first evidence to indicate that circulating eCB/NAE levels are altered in BMS.”
“MAGL (monoacylglycerol lipase) is an enzyme that hydrolyzes the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol and regulates the production of arachidonic acid and prostaglandins-substances that mediate tissue inflammatory response. Here, we have studied the effects of the selective MAGL inhibitors JZL184 and MJN110 and their underlying molecular mechanisms on 3 different experimental models of focal cerebral ischemia.
Pharmacological inhibition of MAGL significantly attenuated infarct volume and hemispheric swelling. MAGL inhibition also ameliorated sensorimotor deficits, suppressed inflammatory response, and decreased the number of degenerating neurons. These beneficial effects of MAGL inhibition were not fully abrogated by selective antagonists of cannabinoid receptors, indicating that the anti-inflammatory effects are caused by inhibition of eicosanoid production rather than by activation of cannabinoid receptors.
Our results suggest that MAGL may contribute to the pathophysiology of focal cerebral ischemia and is thus a promising therapeutic target for the treatment of ischemic stroke.”
“Two types of cannabinoid (CB) receptors have been described in the human body: CB1 and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptor distribution may be related to the cannabinoid functions of memory and cognition regulation as well as motor control.
In addition, the endocannabinoid system (ECS) related to CB1 receptors may be involved in human emotion regulation, especially depression occurrence. Indeed, CB1 receptors are all distributed in depression associated neuroanatomical structures and neural circuits.
Both animal experiments and clinical studies have demonstrated that impairment of the ECS pathway is present in depression models and patients, and application of both CB1 receptor agonists and anandamide (cannabinoid-like substance) degradation inhibitors produce similar biochemical and behavioral effects as antidepressants.
These findings provide a solid basis for understanding the ECS role in the formation and development of depression. Therefore, it can be inferred that the ECS may have an important function in both depression treatment and the effects of antidepressants.”
“Eating Disorder (ED) is characterized by persistently and severely disturbed eating behaviours. They arise from a combination of long-standing behavioural, emotional, psychological, interpersonal, and social factors and result in insufficient nutrient ingestion and/or adsorption. The three main EDs are: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder. We review the role of peripheral endocannabinoids in eating behaviour.
The neuronal pathways involved in feeding behaviours are closely related to catecholaminergic, serotoninergic and peptidergic systems. Accordingly, feeding is promoted by serotonin, dopamine, and prostaglandin and inhibited by neuropeptide Y, norepinephrine, GABA, and opioid peptides. The endocannabinoid system plays a role in EDs, and multiple lines of evidence indicate that the cannabinoid signalling system is a key modulatory factor of the activity in the brain areas involved in EDs as well as in reward processes.
Besides their central role in controlling food behaviours, peripheral cannabinoids are also involved in regulating adipose tissue and insulin signalling as well as cell metabolism in peripheral tissues such as liver, pancreas, fatty tissue, and skeletal muscle. Altogether, these data indicate that peripheral cannabinoids can provide new therapeutic targets not only for EDs but also for metabolic disease.”
“Ischemia not only activates cell death pathways but also triggers endogenous protective mechanisms. However, it is largely unknown what is the essence of the endogenous neuroprotective mechanisms induced by preconditioning. In this study we demonstrated that systemic injection of JZL195, a selective inhibitor of eCB clearance enzymes, induces in vivo long-term depression at CA3-CA1 synapses and at PrL-NAc synapses produces neuroprotection. JZL195-elicited long-term depression is blocked by AM281, the antagonist of cannabinoid 1 receptor (CB1R) and is abolished in mice lacking cannabinoid CB1 receptor (CB1R) in astroglial cells, but is conserved in mice lacking CB1R in glutamatergic or GABAergic neurons. Blocking the glutamate NMDA receptor and the synaptic trafficking of glutamate AMPA receptor abolishes both long-term depression and neuroprotection induced by JZL195. Mice lacking CB1R in astroglia show decreased neuronal death following cerebral ischemia. Thus, an acute elevation of extracellular eCB following eCB clearance inhibition results in neuroprotection through long-term depression induction after sequential activation of astroglial CB1R and postsynaptic glutamate receptors.”
“Neurogenesis is one of the most important phenomenona affecting human life. This process consists of proliferation, migration and differentiation of neuroblasts and synaptic integrations of newborn neurons.
Proliferation of new cells continues into old age, also in humans, although the most extensive process of cell formation occurs during the prenatal period. It is possible to distinguish two regions in the brain responsible for neurogenesis: the dentate gyrus (DG) of the hippocampus and the sub-ventricular zone (SVZ). Hippocampal neurogenesis is very sensitive to various physiological and pathological stimuli.
The functional integration of the newly-born dentate granule cells into hippocampal circuitry, and their ability to mediate long-term potentiation in DG, has led to the hypothesis that neurogenesis in the adult brain may play a key role in learning and memory function, as well as cognitive dysfunction in some diseases.
Brain disorders, such as neurodegenerative diseases or traumatic brain injuries, significantly affect migration, proliferation and differentiation of neural cells. In searching for the best neurological drugs protecting neuronal cells, stimulating neurogenesis, while also developing no side-effects, endocannabinoids proved to be a strong group of substances having many beneficial properties.
Therefore, the latest data is reviewed of the various experimental studies concerning the analysis of the most commonly studied cannabinoids and their impact on neurogenesis.”
“The role of cannabinoids in adult neurogenesis. Pharmacological targeting of the cannabinoid system as a regulator of neurogenesis may prove a fruitful strategy in the prevention or treatment of mood or memory disorders.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4543605/
“Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (∆9-THC) Induce Neurogenesis and Improve Cognitive Performances of Male Sprague Dawley Rats. Administration of ∆9-THC was observed to enhance the neurogenesis in the brain, especially in hippocampus thus improved the cognitive function of rats.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28933048
“Cannabinoids promote embryonic and adult hippocampus neurogenesis and produce anxiolytic- and antidepressant-like effects. Chronic administration of the major drugs of abuse including opiates, alcohol, nicotine, and cocaine has been reported to suppress hippocampal neurogenesis in adult rats. Plant-derived, or synthetic cannabinoids may promote hippocampal neurogenesis. Cannabinoids appear to be the only illicit drug whose capacity to produce increased hippocampal newborn neurons is positively correlated with its anxiolytic- and antidepressant-like effects. In summary, since adult hippocampal neurogenesis is suppressed following chronic administration of opiates, alcohol, nicotine, and cocaine, the present study suggests that cannabinoids are the only illicit drug that can promote adult hippocampal neurogenesis following chronic administration.” https://www.jci.org/articles/view/25509
“Cannabinoids have been used for their analgesic and euphoric effects for millennia, but recently the antipruritic effects of cannabis have been discovered.
Considering the similarities between pain and itch sensations, we hypothesized that cannabinoid receptors may play a role in the antipruritic effects of cannabinoids.
Our findings support prior researches indicating that cannabinoids exert antipruritic effects. Moreover, our results show that the antipruritic effects of cannabinoids are partially mediated by spinal CB1 receptors.”