Cannabinoids and Opioids in the Treatment of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases.

Image result for clinical and translational gastroenterology“In traditional medicine, Cannabis sativa has been prescribed for a variety of diseases. Today, the plant is largely known for its recreational purpose, but it may find a way back to what it was originally known for: a herbal remedy. Most of the plant’s ingredients, such as Δ-tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiol, cannabigerol, and others, have demonstrated beneficial effects in preclinical models of intestinal inflammation. Endogenous cannabinoids (endocannabinoids) have shown a regulatory role in inflammation and mucosal permeability of the gastrointestinal tract where they likely interact with the gut microbiome. Anecdotal reports suggest that in humans, Cannabis exerts antinociceptive, anti-inflammatory, and antidiarrheal properties. Despite these reports, strong evidence on beneficial effects of Cannabis in human gastrointestinal diseases is lacking. Clinical trials with Cannabis in patients suffering from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have shown improvement in quality of life but failed to provide evidence for a reduction of inflammation markers. Within the endogenous opioid system, mu opioid receptors may be involved in anti-inflammation of the gut. Opioids are frequently used to treat abdominal pain in IBD; however, heavy opioid use in IBD is associated with opioid dependency and higher mortality. This review highlights latest advances in the potential treatment of IBD using Cannabis/cannabinoids or opioids.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31899693

https://journals.lww.com/ctg/Abstract/latest/Cannabinoids_and_Opioids_in_the_Treatment_of.99898.aspx

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[Cannabidiol in cancer treatment].

Image result for springer link journals“Cannabis was used for cancer patients as early as about 2500 years ago.

Experimental studies demonstrated tumor-inhibiting activities of various cannabinoids more than 40 years ago.

In view of the status of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) as a regulated substance, non-psychotomimetic cannabidiol (CBD) is of particular importance.

RESULTS:

Preclinical studies, particularly recent ones, including numerous animal models of tumors, unanimously suggest the therapeutic efficacy of CBD. In isolated combination studies, synergistic effects were generally observed. In addition, CBD may potentially play a role in the palliative care of patients, especially concerning symptoms such as pain, insomnia, anxiety, and depression. Further human studies are warranted.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31897700

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00482-019-00438-9

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Effect of combined doses of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol or tetrahydrocannabinolic acid and cannabidiolic acid on acute nausea in male Sprague-Dawley rats.

 “This study evaluated the potential of combined cannabis constituents to reduce nausea.

CONCLUSION:

Combinations of very low doses of CBD + THC or CBDA + THCA robustly reduce LiCl-induced conditioned gaping. Clinical trials are necessary to determine the efficacy of using single or combined cannabinoids as adjunct treatments with existing anti-emetic regimens to manage chemotherapy-induced nausea.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31897571

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00213-019-05428-4

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A novel phytocannabinoid isolated from Cannabis sativa L. with an in vivo cannabimimetic activity higher than Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol: Δ9-Tetrahydrocannabiphorol.

 Scientific Reports“(-)-Trans-Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) is the main compound responsible for the intoxicant activity of Cannabis sativa L. The length of the side alkyl chain influences the biological activity of this cannabinoid. In particular, synthetic analogues of Δ9-THC with a longer side chain have shown cannabimimetic properties far higher than Δ9-THC itself. In the attempt to define the phytocannabinoids profile that characterizes a medicinal cannabis variety, a new phytocannabinoid with the same structure of Δ9-THC but with a seven-term alkyl side chain was identified. The natural compound was isolated and fully characterized and its stereochemical configuration was assigned by match with the same compound obtained by a stereoselective synthesis. This new phytocannabinoid has been called (-)-trans-Δ9-tetrahydrocannabiphorol (Δ9-THCP). Along with Δ9-THCP, the corresponding cannabidiol (CBD) homolog with seven-term side alkyl chain (CBDP) was also isolated and unambiguously identified by match with its synthetic counterpart. The binding activity of Δ9-THCP against human CB1 receptor in vitro (Ki = 1.2 nM) resulted similar to that of CP55940 (Ki = 0.9 nM), a potent full CB1 agonist. In the cannabinoid tetrad pharmacological test, Δ9-THCP induced hypomotility, analgesia, catalepsy and decreased rectal temperature indicating a THC-like cannabimimetic activity. The presence of this new phytocannabinoid could account for the pharmacological properties of some cannabis varieties difficult to explain by the presence of the sole Δ9-THC.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31889124

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-019-56785-1

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Antioxidative and Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Cannabidiol.

antioxidants-logo“Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the main pharmacologically active phytocannabinoids of Cannabis sativa L. CBD is non-psychoactive but exerts a number of beneficial pharmacological effects, including anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The chemistry and pharmacology of CBD, as well as various molecular targets, including cannabinoid receptors and other components of the endocannabinoid system with which it interacts, have been extensively studied. In addition, preclinical and clinical studies have contributed to our understanding of the therapeutic potential of CBD for many diseases, including diseases associated with oxidative stress. Here, we review the main biological effects of CBD, and its synthetic derivatives, focusing on the cellular, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties of CBD.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31881765

https://www.mdpi.com/2076-3921/9/1/21

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Pharmacists and the future of cannabis medicine.

“To summarize the history and evolution of cannabis use and policies and to review current therapeutic uses, safety, and the central role pharmacists can play.

SUMMARY:

Cannabis regulation and use have evolved over the centuries and are becoming more widely accepted, with over two-thirds of states in the United States having an approved cannabis program. However, changing policy and a paucity of controlled clinical trials has led to questions on the safety and effectiveness of cannabinoid therapies. Although there are conditions for which cannabinoids may be helpful, potential contraindications, adverse effects, and drug-drug interactions should be taken into account.

CONCLUSION:

Pharmacists are in a unique position based on their accessibility, knowledge, and skills to guide product selection, dosing, and discuss drug interactions and adverse effects to educate patients on safe cannabis use, whether it be delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiol, or a combination thereof. Pharmacists and pharmacy organizations, moreover, should advocate for an integral role in the medical cannabis movement to ensure patient safety and evaluate cannabinoid pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, drug-drug interactions, safety, and efficacy through rigorous investigations.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31870860

https://www.japha.org/article/S1544-3191(19)30513-8/fulltext

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Cannabis and Neuropsychiatric Disorders: An Updated Review.

 Image result for Acta Neurol Taiwan. journal“Cannabis plant has the scientific name called Cannabis sativa L. Cannabis plant has many species, but there are three main species including Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica and Cannabis ruderalis. Over 70 compounds isolated from cannabis species are called cannabinoids (CBN).

Cannabinoids produce over 100 naturally occurring chemicals. The most abundant chemicals are delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD). THC is psychotropic chemical that makes people feel “high” while CBD is nonpsychotropic chemical. However, cannabinoid chemicals are not found only in the cannabis plant, they are also produced by the mammalian body, called endocannabinoids and in the laboratory, called synthesized cannabinoids.

Endocannabinoids are endogenous lipid-based retrograde neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors, and cannabinoid receptor proteins that are expressed throughout the mammalian central nervous system including brain and peripheral nervous system. There are at least two types of endocannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2) which are G-protein coupled receptors.

CB1 receptors are particularly abundant in the frontal cortex, hippocampus, basal ganglia, hypothalamus and cerebellum, spinal cord and peripheral nervous system. They are present in inhibitory GABA-ergic neurons and excitatory glutamatergic neurons. CB2 receptor is most abundantly found on cells of the immune system, hematopoietic cells and glia cells. CB2 is mainly expressed in the periphery under normal healthy condition, but in conditions of disease or injury, this upregulation occurs within the brain, and CB2 is therefore expressed in the brain in unhealthy states.

Cannabis and cannabinoid are studied in different medical conditions. The therapeutic potentials of both cannabis and cannabinoid are related to the effects of THC, CBD and other cannabinoid compounds. However, the “high” effect of THC in cannabis and cannabinoid may limit the clinical use, particularly, the study on the therapeutic potential of THC alone is more limited.

This review emphasizes the therapeutic potential of CBD and CBD with THC. CBD has shown to have benefit in a variety of neuropsychiatric disorders including autism spectrum disorder, anxiety, psychosis, neuropathic pain, cancer pain, HIV, migraine, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, Huntington disease, hypoxic-ischemic injury and epilepsy. CBD is generally well tolerated. Most common adverse events are diarrhea and somnolence. CBD also shows significantly low abuse potential.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31867704

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Use of cannabidiol in anxiety and anxiety-related disorders.

“Cannabidiol (CBD) has a proposed novel role in the management of anxiety owing to its actions on the endocannabinoid system.

The purpose of this systematic review was to evaluate the current evidence on the safety and efficacy of CBD in anxiety and anxiety-related disorders.

RESULTS:

Eight articles were included in the review: 6 small, randomized controlled trials; 1 case series; and 1 case report. These studies examined the role of CBD in the anxiety response of healthy volunteers; in generalized anxiety disorder; in social anxiety disorder; and in the anxiety component of posttraumatic stress syndrome. No articles that evaluated CBD in panic disorder, specific phobia, separation anxiety, and obsessive-compulsive disorder were identified. In the studies, CBD was administered orally as a capsule or as a sublingual spray and as either monotherapy or adjunctive therapy. Doses varied widely, with studies employing fixed CBD doses ranging from 6 mg to 400 mg per dose. Various anxiety assessment scales were used in the studies to assess efficacy, with CBD demonstrating improved clinical outcomes among the instruments. In general, CBD was well-tolerated and associated with minimal adverse effects, with the most commonly noted adverse effects being fatigue and sedation.

CONCLUSION:

CBD has a promising role as alternative therapy in the management of anxiety disorders. However, more studies with standardized approaches to dosing and clinical outcome measurements are needed to determine the appropriate dosing strategy for CBD and its place in therapy.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31866386

https://www.japha.org/article/S1544-3191(19)30514-X/fulltext

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Cannabis-based products for pediatric epilepsy: An updated systematic review.

Seizure - European Journal of Epilepsy Home“To provide an up-to-date summary of the benefits and harms of cannabis-based products for epilepsy in children.

METHODS:

We updated our earlier systematic review, by searching for studies published up to May 2019. We included randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and non-randomized studies (NRS) involving cannabis-based products administered to children with epilepsy. Outcomes were seizure freedom, seizure frequency, quality of life, sleep, status epilepticus, death, gastrointestinal adverse events, and emergency room visits.

RESULTS:

Thirty-five studies, including four RCTs, have assessed the benefits and harms of cannabis-based products in pediatric epilepsy (12 since April 2018). All involved cannabis-based products as adjunctive treatment, and most involved cannabidiol. In the RCTs, there was no statistically significant difference between cannabidiol and placebo for seizure freedom (relative risk 6.77, 95 % confidence interval [CI] 0.36-128.38), quality of life (mean difference [MD] 0.6, 95 %CI -2.6 to 3.9), or sleep disruption (MD -0.3, 95 %CI -0.8 to 0.2). Data from both RCTs and NRS suggest that cannabidiol reduces seizure frequency and increases treatment response; however, there is an increased risk of gastrointestinal adverse events.

CONCLUSION:

Newly available evidence supports earlier findings that cannabidiol probably reduces the frequency of seizures among children with drug-resistant epilepsy.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31865133

https://www.seizure-journal.com/article/S1059-1311(19)30733-2/fulltext

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Cannabinoids and dystonia: an issue yet to be defined.

 “Dystonia is a movement disorder characterized by sustained or intermittent muscle contractions causing abnormal movements and postures. Besides motor manifestations, patients with dystonia also display non-motor signs and symptoms including psychiatric and sensory disturbances.

Symptomatic treatment of motor signs in dystonia largely relies on intramuscular botulinum toxin injections and, in selected cases, on deep brain stimulation. Oral medications and physical therapy offer a few benefits only in a minority of patients.

Cannabinoids have been shown to be a complementary treatment in several neurological disorders but their usefulness in dystonia have not been systematically assessed. Given recent policy changes in favor of cannabis use in clinical practice and the request for alternative treatments, it is important to understand how cannabinoids may impact people with dystonia.

Reviewing the evidence so far available and our own experience, cannabinoids seem to be effective in single cases but further studies are required to improve our understanding on their role as complementary treatment in dystonia.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31848779

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10072-019-04196-5

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