Role of the endocannabinoid and endovanilloid systems in an animal model of schizophrenia-related emotional processing/cognitive deficit.

Neuropharmacology

“Studies suggest that the endocannabinoid and endovanilloid systems are implicated in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.

The Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats (SHR) strain displays impaired contextual fear conditioning (CFC) attenuated by antipsychotic drugs and worsened by pro-psychotic manipulations. Therefore, SHR strain is used to study emotional processing/associative learning impairments associated with schizophrenia and effects of potential antipsychotic drugs.

Here, we evaluated the expression of CB1 and TRPV1 receptors in some brain regions related to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. We also assessed the effects of drugs that act on the endocannabinoid/endovanilloid systems on the CFC task in SHRs and control animals (Wistar rats – WRs).

These results reinforce the involvement of the endocannabinoid/endovanilloid systems in the SHRs CFC deficit and point to these systems as targets to treat the emotional processing/cognitive symptoms of schizophrenia.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31103618

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0028390819301649?via%3Dihub

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Cannabis: From a Plant That Modulates Feeding Behaviors toward Developing Selective Inhibitors of the Peripheral Endocannabinoid System for the Treatment of Obesity and Metabolic Syndrome.

toxins-logo “In this review, we discuss the role of the endocannabinoid (eCB) system in regulating energy and metabolic homeostasis. Endocannabinoids, via activating the cannabinoid type-1 receptor (CB1R), are commonly known as mediators of the thrifty phenotype hypothesis due to their activity in the central nervous system, which in turn regulates food intake and underlies the development of metabolic syndrome. Indeed, these findings led to the clinical testing of globally acting CB1R blockers for obesity and various metabolic complications. However, their therapeutic potential was halted due to centrally mediated adverse effects. Recent observations that highlighted the key role of the peripheral eCB system in metabolic regulation led to the preclinical development of various novel compounds that block CB1R only in peripheral organs with very limited brain penetration and without causing behavioral side effects. These unique molecules, which effectively ameliorate obesity, type II diabetes, fatty liver, insulin resistance, and chronic kidney disease in several animal models, are likely to be further developed in the clinic and may revive the therapeutic potential of blocking CB1R once again.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31096702

https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6651/11/5/275

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Emerging Class of Omega-3 Fatty Acid Endocannabinoids & Their Derivatives.

Prostaglandins & Other Lipid Mediators

“Cannabinoid receptor activation is involved in homeostatic regulation of the body. These receptors are activated by cannabinoids, that include the active constituents of Cannabis sativa as well as endocannabinoids (eCBs). The eCBs are endogenously synthesized from the omega-6 and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). In summary, we outline the novel findings regarding a growing class of signaling molecules, omega-3 eCBs, that can control the physiological and pathophysiological processes in the body.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31085370

“Anti-inflammatory ω-3 endocannabinoid epoxides.”  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28687674

“Antitumorigenic Properties of Omega-3 Endocannabinoid Epoxides.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29856219

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Endocannabinoid System in Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type-3 and Other Autosomal-Dominant Cerebellar Ataxias: Potential Role in Pathogenesis and Expected Relevance as Neuroprotective Targets.

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“Spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs) are a group of hereditary and progressive neurological disorders characterized by a loss of balance and motor coordination. SCAs have no cure and effective symptom-alleviating and disease-modifying therapies are not currently available. However, based on results obtained in studies conducted in murine models and information derived from analyses in post-mortem tissue samples from patients, which show notably higher levels of CB1 receptors found in different cerebellar neuronal subpopulations, the blockade of these receptors has been proposed for acutely modulating motor incoordination in cerebellar ataxias, whereas their chronic activation has been proposed for preserving specific neuronal losses. Additional studies in post-mortem tissues from SCA patients have also demonstrated elevated levels of CB2 receptors in Purkinje neurons as well as in glial elements in the granular layer and in the cerebellar white matter, with a similar profile found for endocannabinoid hydrolyzing enzymes, then suggesting that activating CB2 receptors and/or inhibiting these enzymes may also serve to develop cannabinoid-based neuroprotective therapies.”
“Dysregulation of the endocannabinoid signaling system in the cerebellum and brainstem in a transgenic mouse model of spinocerebellar ataxia type-3.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27717809
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Endocannabinoid contributions to alcohol habits and motivation: Relevance to treatment.

Addiction Biology banner“Individuals with alcohol use disorder exhibit compulsive habitual behaviors that are thought to be, in part, a consequence of chronic and persistent use of alcohol.

The endocannabinoid system plays a critical role in habit learning and in ethanol self-administration, but the role of this neuromodulatory system in the expression of habitual alcohol seeking is unknown.

Here, we investigated the role of the endocannabinoid system in established alcohol habits using contingency degradation in male C57BL/6 mice.

These results demonstrate an important role for endocannabinoid signaling in the motivation to seek ethanol, in ethanol-motivated habits, and suggest that pharmacological manipulations of endocannabinoid signaling could be effective therapeutics for treating alcohol use disorder.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31056846

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/adb.12768

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Marijuana for Parkinson’s Disease?

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“Marijuana is popular in the United States and is being widely legalized for recreational and medicinal purposes. It remains a Schedule 1 substance without fully proven risks and benefits; yet, it is increasingly available in many US states and territories.

Cannabis might have medicinal efficacy in Parkinson’s disease as a form of medical marijuana. Endocannabinoid receptors exist throughout the nervous system and are documented to influence receptors affecting a wide variety of areas. Neuroprotective aspects might be induced by cannabis exposure that might yield benefit against the nigrostriatal degeneration of patients with Parkinson’s disease.

Animal investigations support suggestions of improvement in bradykinesia and/or tremors, but this is unsubstantiated in human studies. However, some patient surveys and anecdotal or case reports indicate that marijuana attenuates some motor manifestations of parkinsonism and also of non-motor, mood and/or cognitive symptoms. Medical marijuana might benefit motor and nonmotor aspects of Parkinson’s disease patients. Currently, these assertions are not substantiated in human investigations and cannabis can also induce side effects. Until studies clarify the safety and efficacy of pharmacotherapy with cannabis products, medical marijuana remains largely without scientific endorsement. Research has yet to document the full benefits, risks, and clinical applications of marijuana as a treatment for patients with Parkinson’s disease.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31037227

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Aging circadian rhythms and cannabinoids.

Neurobiology of Aging

“Numerous aspects of mammalian physiology exhibit cyclic daily patterns known as circadian rhythms. However, studies in aged humans and animals indicate that these physiological rhythms are not consistent throughout the life span. The simultaneous development of disrupted circadian rhythms and age-related impairments suggests a shared mechanism, which may be amenable to therapeutic intervention.

Recently, the endocannabinoid system has emerged as a complex signaling network, which regulates numerous aspects of circadian physiology relevant to the neurobiology of aging.

Agonists of cannabinoid receptor-1 (CB1) have consistently been shown to decrease neuronal activity, core body temperature, locomotion, and cognitive function. Paradoxically, several lines of evidence now suggest that very low doses of cannabinoids are beneficial in advanced age.

One potential explanation for this phenomenon is that these drugs exhibit hormesis-a biphasic dose-response wherein low doses produce the opposite effects of higher doses. Therefore, it is important to determine the dose-, age-, and time-dependent effects of these substances on the regulation of circadian rhythms and other processes dysregulated in aging.

This review highlights 3 fields-biological aging, circadian rhythms, and endocannabinoid signaling-to critically assess the therapeutic potential of endocannabinoid modulation in aged individuals. If the hormetic properties of exogenous cannabinoids are confirmed, we conclude that precise administration of these compounds may bidirectionally entrain central and peripheral circadian clocks and benefit multiple aspects of aging physiology.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31035036

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0197458019300867?via%3Dihub

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The Endocannabinoid System Is Present in Rod Outer Segments from Retina and Is Modulated by Light.

“The aim of the present research was to evaluate if the endocannabinoid system (enzymes and receptors) could be modulated by light in rod outer segment (ROS) from bovine retina. First, we analyzed endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) metabolism in purified ROS obtained from dark-adapted (DROS) or light-adapted (LROS) retinas. To this end, diacylglycerol lipase (DAGL), monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL), and lysophosphatidate phosphohydrolase (LPAP) enzymatic activities were analyzed using radioactive substrates. The protein content of these enzymes and of the receptors to which cannabinoids bind was determined by immunoblotting under light stimulus. Our results indicate that whereas DAGL and MAGL activities were stimulated in retinas exposed to light, no changes were observed in LPAP activity. Interestingly, the protein content of the main enzymes involved in 2-AG metabolism, phospholipase C β1 (PLCβ1), and DAGLα (synthesis), and MAGL (hydrolysis), was also modified by light. PLCβ1 content was increased, while that of lipases was decreased. On the other hand, light produced an increase in the cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 and a decrease in GPR55 protein levels. Taken together, our results indicate that the endocannabinoid system (enzymes and receptors) depends on the illumination state of the retina, suggesting that proteins related to phototransduction phenomena could be involved in the effects observed.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31016476

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs12035-019-1603-5

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Cannabinoid Regulation of Fear and Anxiety: an Update.

 

“Anxiety- and trauma-related disorders are prevalent and debilitating mental illnesses associated with a significant socioeconomic burden. Current treatment approaches often have inadequate therapeutic responses, leading to symptom relapse. Here we review recent preclinical and clinical findings on the potential of cannabinoids as novel therapeutics for regulating fear and anxiety.

RECENT FINDINGS:

Evidence from preclinical studies has shown that the non-psychotropic phytocannabinoid cannabidiol and the endocannabinoid anandamide have acute anxiolytic effects and also regulate learned fear by dampening its expression, enhancing its extinction and disrupting its reconsolidation. The findings from the relevant clinical literature are still very preliminary but are nonetheless encouraging. Based on this preclinical evidence, larger-scale placebo-controlled clinical studies are warranted to investigate the effects of cannabidiol in particular as an adjunct to psychological therapy or medication to determine its potential utility for treating anxiety-related disorders in the future.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31030284

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11920-019-1026-z

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The Endocannabinoid/Endovanilloid System in Bone: From Osteoporosis to Osteosarcoma.

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“Bone is a dynamic tissue, whose homeostasis is maintained by a fine balance between osteoclast (OC) and osteoblast (OB) activity. The endocannabinoid/endovanilloid (EC/EV) system’s receptors are the cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1), the cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2), and the transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily V member 1 (TRPV1). Their stimulation modulates bone formation and bone resorption. Bone diseases are very common worldwide. Osteoporosis is the principal cause of bone loss and it can be caused by several factors such as postmenopausal estrogen decrease, glucocorticoid (GC) treatments, iron overload, and chemotherapies. Studies have demonstrated that CB1 and TRPV1 stimulation exerts osteoclastogenic effects, whereas CB2 stimulation has an anti-osteoclastogenic role. Moreover, the EC/EV system has been demonstrated to have a role in cancer, favoring apoptosis and inhibiting cell proliferation. In particular, in bone cancer, the modulation of the EC/EV system not only reduces cell growth and enhances apoptosis but it also reduces cell invasion and bone pain in mouse models. Therefore, EC/EV receptors may be a useful pharmacological target in the prevention and treatment of bone diseases. More studies to better investigate the biochemical mechanisms underlining the EC/EV system effects in bone are needed, but the synthesis of hybrid molecules, targeting these receptors and capable of oppositely regulating bone homeostasis, seems to be a promising and encouraging prospective in bone disease management.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31003519

https://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/20/8/1919

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