Neurodegeneration and Cannabis

Neurodegeneration effects millions of Americans.  Neurodegeneration is a broad term used for the progressive loss of structure or function of neurons, including death of neurons. Many neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson’s,Alzheimer’s, and Huntington’s occur as a result of neurodegenerative processes.

The Endocannabinoid System in Neuropathological States
Among the group of brain disorders that have been associated with the endocannabinoid system, a special interest in various neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and ischemia. These three disorders will be reviewed here from the perspective of the types of changes experienced by the cannabinoid signalling in humans and cellular or animal models, and from a possible usefulness of certain cannabinoid compounds to alleviate symptoms and/or to delay their progression.”—In other words: Because of the endocannabinoid system and cannabinoid receptors, cannabinoids could cure neurodegenerative diseases.

The Endocannabinoid System in Targeting Inflammatory Neurodegenerative Diseases 
Past posts have shown that there are functional cannabinoid receptors in the CNS and that Cannabinoids modulate the endocannabinoid system. This science says: “An early combination of neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory approaches to these disorders seems particularly desirable… We discuss the apparently unique opportunity to modify neurodegeneration and neuroinflammation simultaneously by pharmacological manipulation of the endocannabinoid system in the CNS and in peripheral immune cells.

Cannabinoid Receptors and Endocannabinoids: Role in Neuroinflammatory and Neurodegenerative Disorders
The receptors for Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol, the major psychoactive principle of marijuana, are known as cannabinoid receptors of type 1 (CB1) and 2 (CB2) and play important functions in degenerative and inflammatory disorders of the central nervous system. We discuss plasticity of the endocannabinoid system during central nervous system disorders, as well as its dysregulation, both of which have opened the way to the use of either direct and indirect activators or blockers of CB1 and CB2 receptors for the treatment of the symptoms or progression of these diseases.”—Cannabinoids are direct activators and/or blockers of CB1 and CB2.

The Endocannabinoid System in Neurodegeneration
Anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) are the best studied endocannabinoids, and act as agonists of cannabinoid receptors. AEA and 2-AG mimic pharmacological effects of the exogenous cannabinoid delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive principle of marijuana. Together with AEA, 2-AG and congeners, the proteins that bind, transport and metabolize these lipids form the “endocannabinoid system”. This new system will be presented in this review, in order to put in a better perspective the role of the endocannabinoid pathway in neurodegenerative disorders, like Parkinson’s disease, etc… In addition, the exploitation of antagonists of endocannabinoid receptors, or of inhibitors of endocannabinoid metabolism, as next-generation therapeutics will be discussed.

Cannabinoid Receptor Signalling in Neurodegenerative Diseases: A Potential Role For Membrane Fluidity Disturbance
Endocannabinoids (eCBs)’, belong to an ancient neurosignalling system that plays important functions in neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, etc…The results of these investigations might be exploited for the development of novel therapeutics able to combat disorders associated with abnormal activity of CB(1).

Cannabinoids and Neuroprotection in Motor-Related Disorders 
Neuroprotective properties of cannabinoids have been extensively studied in the last years in different neurodegenerative pathologies.This potential is based on the antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-excitotoxic properties exhibited by these compounds that allow them to afford neuroprotection in different neurodegenerative disorders. In the review, we collect the latest advances in the knowledge of the cellular and molecular mechanisms through which cannabinoids arrest/delay the degeneration of specific neuronal subpopulations in these motor-related disorders. This should serve to encourage that the present promising evidence obtained mainly at the preclinical level might progress to a real exploitation of neuroprotective benefits of cannabinoid-based medicines.

8 thoughts on “Neurodegeneration and Cannabis

  1. Pingback: New Study Finds Cannabinoids Could Be A Beneficial Treatment Option For Parkinson’s Disease | Cherry Girl

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