Omega-3 Endocannabinoid-Epoxides Are Novel Anti-inflammatory and Anti-Pain Lipid Metabolites (FS15-01-19).

Issue Cover“Omega-3 fatty acid derived endocannabinoids are metabolized by cytochrome P450s to form bioactive endocannabinoid epoxides that are anti-inflammatory.


Cannabinoids are found in marijuana and also are produced naturally in the body from ω-3 and ω-6 fatty acids. Exocannabinoids in marijuana, are known to be responsible for some of its euphoric effects, but they also exhibit anti-inflammatory benefits. Our study revealed a cascade of enzymatic reactions that convert ω-3 fatty acids into anti-inflammatory endocannabinoid epoxides that act through the same receptors in the body as marijuana (PNAS 2017).

Endocannabinoids are ligands for cannabinoidreceptor 1 and 2 (CB1 and CB2). CB1 receptor agonists exhibit psychotropic properties while CB2 receptor agonists have anti-inflammatory effects. Consequently, there is a strong interest in the discovery of CB2 selective agonists to mitigate inflammatory pathologies. The work details the discovery and characterization of naturally occurring ω-3-derived endocannabinoid epoxides that are formed via enzymatic oxidation of ω-3 endocannabinoids by cytochrome P450 epoxygenases. These dual functional ω-3 endocannabinoid epoxides exhibit preference towards binding to CB2 receptor and are anti-inflammatory and vasodilatory and reciprocally modulate platelet aggregation. Some of the other regioisomers of ω-3 endocannabinoid epoxides are partial agonists of CB1 and stop tumor cell metastasis (J. Med. Chem 2018). By virtue of their physiological properties, they are expected to play important roles in neuroinflammation and pain.


This finding demonstrates how omega-3 fatty acids can produce some of the same medicinal qualities as marijuana, but without a psychotropic effect. In summary, the ω-3 endocannabinoid epoxides are found at concentrations comparable to those of other endocannabinoids and are expected to play critical roles during inflammation in vivo.”

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.”

“Anti-inflammatory ω-3 endocannabinoid epoxides.”

“Antitumorigenic Properties of Omega-3 Endocannabinoid Epoxides.”

Anti-Tumorigenic Properties of Omega-3 Endocannabinoid Epoxides.

Journal of Medicinal Chemistry

“Accumulating studies have linked inflammation to tumor progression.

Dietary omega-3 fatty acids including docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) have been shown to suppress tumor growth through their conversion to epoxide metabolites. Alternatively, DHA is converted enzymatically into docosahexaenoylethanolamide (DHEA), an endocannabinoid with anti-proliferative activity.

Recently, we reported a novel class of anti-inflammatory DHEA-epoxides (EDP-EAs) that contain both ethanolamide and epoxide moieties. Herein we evaluate the anti-tumorigenic properties of EDP-EAs in an osteosarcoma model.

First, we show ~80% increase in EDP-EAs in metastatic lungs versus normal mouse lungs. We found significant differences in the apoptotic and anti-migratory potency of the different EDP-EA regioisomers, which are partly mediated through cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1).

Furthermore, we synthesized derivatives of the most pro-apoptotic regioisomer. These derivatives had reduced hydrolytic susceptibility to fatty acid-amide hydrolase and increased CB1 binding.

Collectively, we report a novel class of EDP-EAs that exhibit anti-angiogenic, anti-tumorigenic and anti-migratory properties in osteosarcoma.”

“Omega-3 Fatty Byproducts May Have Anticancer Effects.
“Products of omega-3 fatty acid metabolism may have anticancer effects, study shows”
“Omega-3-derived cannabinoid may stop cancer. New research suggests that the body’s natural pain-killer, the “endocannabinoid system,” may also have cancer-fighting properties when “activated” by omega-3 fatty acids.”
“Products of omega-3 fatty acid metabolism may have anticancer effects”

The effect of hemp seed and linseed addition on the quality of liver pâtés.

Image result for Acta Scientiarum Polonorum Technologia Alimentaria

“Liver pâtés are popular all over the world, but they usually contain high amounts of animal fats. It may be beneficial to improve their dietetic value by decreasing the saturated fatty acid content, while maintaining their sensory quality. One way to do this is to add ingredients which are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, such as hemp seed or linseed. Hemp seeds are valuable because of their fat and protein content and linseed is known for its high α-linolenic fatty acid (ALA) content. Both are good sources of fiber.


The addition of hemp and linseed increased the fat content. The fatty acid profile improved signifi- cantly. There were more polyunsaturated fatty acids and the n-6 to n-3 ratio was reduced in both products containing oil seeds compared to the control sample, which is important from the health point of view. The color parameters were not changed. The hardness, chewiness and adhesiveness increased in products contain- ing oil seeds. Those products received higher scores in sensory analysis.


The quality of the pâtés with added oil seed is comparable to or better than the traditional ones. The products with both hemp and linseed can be treated as a good source of n-3 fatty acids. The amount of ALA is high enough to label the product as a source of n-3 fatty acids.”

Analysis of Omega-3 Fatty Acid Derived N-Acylethanolamines in Biological Matrices.

“The adequate quantification of endocannabinoids can be complex due to their low endogenous levels and structural diversity. Therefore, advanced analytical approaches, such as LC-MS, are used to measure endocannabinoids in plasma, tissues, and other matrices. Recent work has shown that endocannabinoids that are synthesized from n-3 fatty acids, such as docosahexaenoylethanolamide (DHEA) and eicosapentaenoylethanolamide (EPEA), have anti-inflammatory and anti-tumorigenic properties and stimulate synapse formation in neurites. Here, an LC-MS based method for the quantification of n-3 endocannabinoids DHEA and EPEA which is also suited to measure a wider spectrum of endocannabinoids is described. The chapter contains a step-by-step protocol for the analysis of n-3 endocannabinoids in plasma, including sample collection and solid phase extraction, LC-MS analysis, and data processing. Modifications to the protocol that allow quantifying n-3 endocannabinoids in tissues and cell culture media will also be discussed. Finally, conditions that alter endocannabinoid concentrations are briefly discussed.”

Distinctive effects of eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids in regulating neural stem cell fate are mediated via endocannabinoid signalling pathways.

“Emerging evidence suggests a complex interplay between the endocannabinoid system, omega-3 fatty acids and the immune system in the promotion of brain self-repair.

However, it is unknown if all omega-3 fatty acids elicit similar effects on adult neurogenesis and if such effects are mediated or regulated by interactions with the endocannabinoid system. This study investigated the effects of DHA and EPA on neural stem cell (NSC) fate and the role of the endocannabinoid signalling pathways in these effects.

EPA, but not DHA, significantly increased proliferation of NSCs compared to controls, an effect associated with enhanced levels of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG) and p-p38 MAPK, effects attenuated by pre-treatment with CB1 (AM251) or CB2 (AM630) receptor antagonists.

Furthermore, in NSCs derived from IL-1β deficient mice, EPA significantly decreased proliferation and p-p38 MAPK levels compared to controls, suggesting a key role for IL-1β signalling in the effects observed. Although DHA similarly increased 2-AG levels in wild-type NSCs, there was no concomitant increase in proliferation or p-p38 MAPK activity. In addition, in NSCs from IL-1β deficient mice, DHA significantly increased proliferation without effects on p-P38 MAPK, suggesting effects of DHA are mediated via alternative signalling pathways.

These results provide crucial new insights into the divergent effects of EPA and DHA in regulating NSC proliferation and the pathways involved, and highlight the therapeutic potential of their interplay with endocannabinoid signalling in brain repair.”

Omega-3 N-acylethanolamines are endogenously synthesised from omega-3 fatty acids in different human prostate and breast cancer cell lines.

“Omega-3 (n-3) fatty acids inhibit breast and prostate cancer cell growth. We previously showed that N-acylethanolamine derivatives of n-3 (n-3-NAE) are endocannabinoids, which regulate cancer cell proliferation. These n-3-NAE are synthesised in certain cells/tissues, after supplementing with fatty acids, however, no one has assessed whether and to what extent this occurs in cancer cells. We determined levels of endogenous n-3-NAEs in hormone sensitive and insensitive prostate and breast cancer cells and subsequent effects on other endocannabinoids (anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol), before and after supplementing with DHA and EPA fatty acids, using HPLC tandem mass spectrometry. This is the first study reporting that n-3-NAEs are synthesised from their parent n-3 fatty acids in cancer cells, regardless of tumour type, hormone status or the presence of fatty acid amide hydrolase. This could have important implications for the use of n-3 fatty acids as therapeutic agents in breast and prostate cancers expressing cannabinoid receptors.”