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Cannabinoid drugs for the crisis

The research group of cannabinoides at the Facultad de Medicina of the UCM within the framework of Moncloa of the Campus of the i-health cluster is researching the neuroprotective potential of the cannabinoid system, a system of intercellular communication which has emerged as an important element in several neurodegenerative diseases.

10/10/2012

The research group of cannabinoides at the Facultad de Medicina of the UCM within the framework of Moncloa Campus the i-health cluster is researching the neuroprotective potential of the cannabinoid system, a system of intercellular communication which has emerged as an important element in several neurodegenerative diseases. Cannabinoid compounds exhibit their neuroprotective action either because of their antioxidant potential, or by binding to its principal receptors, CB1 and CB2, which trigger various intracellular processes. Cannabinoid compounds however, present some problems. In case you have not realized yet, the name derives from the plant Cannabis sativa, commonly known as marijuana, which comprises many compounds. Thus, some of these compounds may have a psychoactive effect (like the street drug) by acting on the CB1 receptor. In addition, natural cannabinoids have poor solubility in water, which complicates their administration and action, or have an effect on several targets (they are not very specific).

The research comprises the development of a platform for the design and / or evaluation of new cannabinoid molecules, with a pharmacological profile particularly aimed at enhancing their neuroprotective properties. Researchers aim to develop new molecules with better affinity and specificity, with improved antioxidant ability or with improved solubility. In addition, they will attempt to combine several features, like being able to block a receptor while activating another, or being able to interact with other systems within the body (such as the opioid system). These molecules will then be analyzed to evaluate their pharmacological potential including ability to bind to the CB1 and / or CB2 receptor, and the type of effect they have on each of these receptors, activating or blocking them. Finally, Researchers will use cell models to evaluate the possible protective effects of these molecules against different toxic stimuli operating in neuronal damage.
Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV)
Those molecules with better a protective profile that successfully pass all tests will then be evaluated in in vivo models of brain trauma, spinal cord injury, ischemia or chronic diseases (Alzheimer, Parkinson, sclerosis). For these experiments, the researchers have the cooperation of the Center for Biomedical Technology of the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, with extensive experience in the microscopic analysis of different brain areas in animal models of neurodegenerative diseases.

The researchers have established success in this demanding field. they recently demonstrated that a novel cannabanoid (tetrahydrocannabivarin) is protective in animal models of Parkinson's disease, thanks to its antioxidant potential and CB2 receptor activation , while improving symptoms by blocking the CB1 receptor (which also avoided psychoactive effects) [1].



Tag: i-Health    Source: CEI Campus Moncloa

Event date:

10/10/2012



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