The Human Body and Cannabis: Understanding Our Endocannabinoid System


I have posted articles that discuss how cannabis cures different illnesses.  In those studies you will find lots of talk of cannabinoid receptors within our bodies.  This is known as our Endocannabinoid system.  When reading some of these medical studies the information can become overwhelming with all the terminology.  Now it is time for us to take a look at what our receptors and this system is all about.

People knew for thousands of years the effects of cannabis but we did not understand it. THC was discovered and synthesized in the 60s.  Then in the 90’s we discovered receptors in the brain called CB1.  The CB1receptors have been found in the brain in areas that control the coordination of movement, emotions, memory, reduction of pain, reward systems, and reproduction, yet are almost  absent in the brain stem (which affects our vital functions such as breathing). It appears that cannabinoid receptors, which modulate other neurotransmitter function in a retrograde “on demand” fashion are present in far higher concentrations in the brain than any other receptor. A second receptor was found, CB2, which are found primarily in the immune system, GI tract, liver, spleen, kidney, bones, heart, and peripheral nervous system.  The CBreceptor appears to be up-regulated whenever there is tissue pathology.  These discoveries of the cannabinoid receptors, endocannabinoids and the related enzymes make up what is now called the endocannabinoid system and it seems to be essential in most if not all physiological systems.  The endocannabinoid system is essential to life and it relates messages that affect how we relax, eat, sleep, forget and protect.

Forms of cancer are caused through receptor activation via environmental and chemical carcinogens. Carcinogens are found in our food, air, water, and more. There are 240 known legal carcinogens on this planet.  To reverse the cancer you would need a receptor antagonist.

Our bodies produce a cannabinoid like compound known as endocannabinoids that are able to bind to the cannabinoid receptors and activate them the same way ingesting cannabis medicine does.  This is short lived because the endocannabinoids are metabolized by enzymes and transported to the cells.

Below is a short video by Jahan Marcu explaining this matter further.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4736563701346383014

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4179107660421413341

Endocannabinoid System: An overview of its Potential in Current Medical Practice
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a lipid signalling system, comprising of the endogenous cannabis-like ligands (endocannabinoids) anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). These bind to a family of G-protein-coupled receptors, called CB1 and CB2.The growing number of preclinical and clinical data on ECS modulators is bound to result in novel therapeutic approaches for a number of diseases currently treated inadequately.
Endocannabinoid system: An overview of its potential in current medical practice.  Mouslech Z, Valla V. Source1st Department of Internal Medicine Clinic, AHEPA University Hospital, Aristotle University, Thessaloniki, Greece.

Abstract
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a lipid signalling system, comprising of the endogenous cannabis-like ligands (endocannabinoids) anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), which derive from arachidonic acid. These bind to a family of G-protein-coupled receptors, called CB1 and CB2. The cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1R) is distributed in brain areas associated with motor control, emotional responses, motivated behaviour and energy homeostasis. In the periphery, the same receptor is expressed in the adipose tissue, pancreas, liver, GI tract, skeletal muscles, heart and the reproduction system. The CB2R is mainly expressed in the immune system regulating its functions. Endocannabinoids are synthesized and released upon demand in a receptor-dependent way. They act as retrograde signalling messengers in GABAergic and glutamatergic synapses and as modulators of postsynaptic transmission, interacting with other neurotransmitters. Endocannabinoids are transported into cells by a specific uptake system and degraded by the enzymes fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) and monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL). The ECS is involved in various pathophysiological conditions in central and peripheral tissues. It is implicated in the hormonal regulation of food intake, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, immune, behavioral, antiproliferative and mammalian reproduction functions. Recent advances have correlated the ECS with drug addiction and alcoholism. The growing number of preclinical and clinical data on ECS modulators is bound to result in novel therapeutic approaches for a number of diseases currently treated inadequately. The ECS dysregulation has been correlated to obesity and metabolic syndrome pathogenesis. Rimonabant is the first CB1 blocker launched to treat cardiometabolic risk factors in obese and overweight patients. Phase III clinical trials showed the drug’s ability to regulate intra-abdominal fat tissue levels, lipidemic, glycemic and inflammatory parameters. However, safety conerns have led to its withrawal. The role of endocannabinoids in mammalian reproduction is an emerging research area given their implication in fertilization, preimplantation embryo and spermatogenesis. The relevant preclinical data on endocannabinoid signalling open up new perspectives as a target to improve infertility and reproductive health in humans.”
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19675519

 

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15 thoughts on “The Human Body and Cannabis: Understanding Our Endocannabinoid System

  1. Greetings! I know this is kinda off topic but I’d figured I’d ask. Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest authoring a blog post or vice-versa? My website goes over a lot of the same subjects as yours and I believe we could greatly benefit from each other. If you’re interested feel free to send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you! Excellent blog by the way!

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  12. Excellent read, I just passed this onto a colleague who was doing a little research on that. And he just bought me lunch as I found it for him smile Therefore let me rephrase that: Thanks for lunch! “Never let inexperience get in the way of ambition.” by Terry Josephson.

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