Role of the Endocannabinoid System in the Neurobiology of Suicide

Cover of The Neurobiological Basis of Suicide

“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.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23035286

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK107200/

“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/

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

Cannabis as an anticonvulsant

BMJ Journals“There are records of the cannabis plant being used for medicinal purposes in ancient times, and in the 19th century it was used as an effective anti-epileptic drug (AED) in children.

However, because of its abuse potential, most countries imposed laws restricting its cultivation and use, and this has greatly inhibited research into possible therapeutic uses.

Things are now changing, and cannabis derivatives are now used legally to treat, for example, pain, nausea and spasticity.

The plant contains over 100 biologically active compounds, and recently it has been possible to isolate these and identify the neurochemical mechanisms by which some of them operate: one in particular, cannabidiol”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29449212

http://adc.bmj.com/content/early/2018/02/15/archdischild-2018-314921

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

Cannabis for paediatric epilepsy: challenges and conundrums.

Image result for Med J Aust.

“Research is expanding for the use of cannabidiol as an anticonvulsant drug. The mechanism of cannabidiol in paediatric epilepsy is unclear but is thought to play a role in modulation of synaptic transmission. Evidence for its efficacy in treating epilepsy is limited but growing, with a single pharmaceutical company-funded randomised double-blind controlled trial in children with Dravet syndrome. Progress towards the use of medicinal cannabinoids incorporates a complex interplay of social influences and political and legal reform. Access to unregistered but available cannabidiol in Australia outside of clinical trials and compassionate access schemes is state dependent and will require Therapeutic Goods Administration approval, although the cost may be prohibitive. Further clinical trials are needed to clearly define efficacy and safety, particularly long term.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29438649

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

Anti-neuroinflammatory effects of grossamide from hemp seed via suppression of TLR-4-mediated NF-κB signaling pathways in lipopolysaccharide-stimulated BV2 microglia cells.

Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry

“Grossamide, a representative lignanamide in hemp seed, has been reported to possess potential anti-inflammatory effects. However, the potential anti-neuroinflammatory effects and underlying mechanisms of action of grossamide are still unclear. Therefore, the present study investigated the possible effects and underlying mechanisms of grossamide against lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced inflammatory response in BV2 microglia cells.

This study demonstrated that grossamide significantly inhibited the secretion of pro-inflammatory mediators such as interleukin 6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α), and decreased the level of LPS-mediated IL-6 and TNF-α mRNA. In addition, it significantly reduced the phosphorylation levels of NF-κB subunit p65 in a concentration-dependent manner and suppressed translocation of NF-κB p65 into the nucleus. Furthermore, grossamide markedly attenuated the LPS-induced expression of Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) and myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MyD88).

Taken together, these data suggest that grossamide could be a potential therapeutic candidate for inhibiting neuroinflammation in neurodegenerative diseases.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28224333

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11010-016-2923-7

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

Neuroprotective Effects of MAGL (Monoacylglycerol Lipase) Inhibitors in Experimental Ischemic Stroke.

American Heart Association Learn and Live

“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.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29440474

http://stroke.ahajournals.org/content/early/2018/02/12/STROKEAHA.117.019664

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

The Use of Cannabis and Cannabinoids in Treating Symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis: a Systematic Review of Reviews.

Current Neurology and Neuroscience Reports

“Pharmaceutical cannabinoids such as nabiximols, nabilone and dronabinol, and plant-based cannabinoids have been investigated for their therapeutic potential in treating multiple sclerosis (MS) symptoms.

This review of reviews aimed to synthesise findings from high quality systematic reviews that examined the safety and effectiveness of cannabinoids in multiple sclerosis. We examined the outcomes of disability and disability progression, pain, spasticity, bladder function, tremor/ataxia, quality of life and adverse effects.

We identified 11 eligible systematic reviews providing data from 32 studies, including 10 moderate to high quality RCTs.

Five reviews concluded that there was sufficient evidence that cannabinoids may be effective for symptoms of pain and/or spasticity in MS. Few reviews reported conclusions for other symptoms.

Recent high quality reviews find cannabinoids may have modest effects in MS for pain or spasticity. Future research should include studies with non-cannabinoid comparators; this is an important gap in the evidence.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29442178

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11910-018-0814-x

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

Learning and Memory is Modulated by Cannabidiol When Administered During Trace Fear-Conditioning.

 Cover image

“Cannabidiol (CBD) is thought to have therapeutic potential for treating psychiatric conditions that affect cognitive aspects of learning and memory, including anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Studies have shown that CBD enhances extinction of fear memory when given after conditioning. This led us to hypothesize that CBD, if administered prior to fear conditioning, might modulate cognitive learning and memory processes in additional ways that would further guide its potential use for treating PTSD.

Therefore, we designed a study to investigate effects of CBD on fear learning and memory when administered to mice prior to administering a trace fear conditioning protocol which imposes cognitive demands on the learning and memory process.

Overall, the memory-modulating effects of a single pre-conditioning dose of CBD, which we show here, demonstrate the need to more fully characterize its basic effects on memory, suggest caution when using it clinically as an anxiolytic, and point to a need for more research into its potential as a therapeutic for treating memory-loss disorders.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29432803

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1074742718300224

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

Changes in the Peripheral Endocannabinoid System as a Risk Factor for the Development of Eating Disorders.

Image result for Endocr Metab Immune Disord Drug Targets.

“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.

DISCUSSION:

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.

CONCLUSION:

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.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29437028

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

Inhibition of aldose reductase activity by Cannabis sativa chemotypes extracts with high content of cannabidiol or cannabigerol.

Cover image

“Aldose reductase (ALR2) is a key enzyme involved in diabetic complications and the search for new aldose reductase inhibitors (ARIs) is currently very important.

The synthetic ARIs are often associated with deleterious side effects and medicinal and edible plants, containing compounds with aldose reductase inhibitory activity, could be useful for prevention and therapy of diabetic complications.

Non-psychotropic phytocannabinoids exert multiple pharmacological effects with therapeutic potential in many diseases such as inflammation, cancer, diabetes.

Here, we have investigated the inhibitory effects of extracts and their fractions from two Cannabis sativa L. chemotypes with high content of cannabidiol (CBD)/cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) and cannabigerol (CBG)/cannabigerolic acid (CBGA), respectively, on human recombinant and pig kidney aldose reductase activity in vitro.

A molecular docking study was performed to evaluate the interaction of these cannabinoids with the active site of ALR2 compared to known ARIs. The extracts showed significant dose-dependent aldose reductase inhibitory activity (>70%) and higher than fractions.

The inhibitory activity of the fractions was greater for acidic cannabinoid-rich fractions. Comparative molecular docking results have shown a higher stability of the ALR2-cannabinoid acids complex than the other inhibitors.

The extracts of Cannabis with high content of non-psychotropic cannabinoids CBD/CBDA or CBG/CBGA significantly inhibit aldose reductase activity.

These results may have some relevance for the possible use of C. sativa chemotypes based preparations as aldose reductase inhibitors.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29427593

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0367326X17317598

“Dietary sources of aldose reductase inhibitors: prospects for alleviating diabetic complications.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19114390

“Edible vegetables as a source of aldose reductase differential inhibitors.”  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28159579

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous

The Endocannabinoid System and Heart Disease: The Role of Cannabinoid Receptor Type 2.

Image result for Cardiovasc Hematol Disord Drug Targets.

“Decades of research has provided evidence for the role of the endocannabinoid system in human health and disease. This versatile system, consisting of two receptors (CB1 and CB2), their endogenous ligands (endocannabinoids), and metabolic enzymes has been implicated in a wide variety of disease states, ranging from neurological disorders to cancer.

CB2 has gained much interest for its beneficial immunomodulatory role that can be obtained without eliciting psychotropic effects through CB1. Recent studies have shed light on a protective role of CB2 in cardiovascular disease, an ailment which currently takes more lives each year in Western countries than any other disease or injury.

By use of CB2 knockout mice and CB2-selective ligands, knowledge of how CB2 signaling affects atherosclerosis and ischemia has been acquired, providing a major stepping stone between basic science and translational clinical research.

Here, we summarize the current understanding of the endocannabinoid system in human pathologies and provide a review of the results from preclinical studies examining its function in cardiovascular disease, with a particular emphasis on possible CB2-targeted therapeutic interventions to alleviate atherosclerosis.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29412125

“Researchers suggest that THC and other cannabinoids, which are active at CB2, the cannabinoid receptor expressed on immune cells, may be valuable in treating atherosclerosis.” https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/787468

“Cardiovascular disease: New use for cannabinoids”  https://www.nature.com/articles/nrd1733

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous