The bright side of psychoactive substances: cannabinoid-based drugs in motor diseases.

“Psychoactive substances are associated with the idea of drugs with high addictive liability, affecting mental states, cognition, emotion and motor behavior. However these substances can modify synaptic transmission and help to disclose some mechanisms underlying alterations in brain processing and pathophysiology of motor disease. Hence, the “bright side” of cannabinoid-based drugs must be thoroughly examined to be identified within the latter framework.

We will analyze the preclinical and clinical evidence of cannabinoid-based drugs, discussing their therapeutic value in basal ganglia motor disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and Huntington disease.

Expert commentary: despite the knowledge acquired in the last years, the therapeutic potential of cannabinoid-based drugs should be further tested by novel routes of investigation. This should be focused on the role of cannabinoid signaling system in mitochondrial function as well as on the physical and functional interaction with other key receptorial targets belonging to this network.”

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