Virodhamine and CP55,940 modulate cAMP production and IL-8 release in human bronchial epithelial cells. (65/168)

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: We investigated expression of cannabinoid receptors and the effects of the endogenous cannabinoid virodhamine and the synthetic agonist CP55,940 on cAMP accumulation and interleukin-8 (IL-8) release in human bronchial epithelial cells. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Human bronchial epithelial (16HBE14o(-)) cells were used. Total mRNA was isolated and cannabinoid receptor mRNAs were detected by RT-PCR. Expression of CB(1) and CB(2) receptor proteins was detected with Western blotting using receptor-specific antibodies. cAMP accumulation was measured by competitive radioligand binding assay. IL-8 release was measured by ELISA. KEY RESULTS: CB(1) and CB(2) receptor mRNAs and proteins were found. Both agonists concentration-dependently decreased forskolin-induced cAMP accumulation. This effect was inhibited by the CB(2) receptor antagonist SR144528, and was sensitive to Pertussis toxin (PTX), suggesting the involvement of CB(2) receptors and G(i/o)-proteins. Cell pretreatment with PTX unmasked a stimulatory component, which was blocked by the CB(1) receptor antagonist SR141716A. CB(2) receptor-mediated inhibition of cAMP production by virodhamine and CP55,940 was paralleled by inhibition of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) induced IL-8 release. This inhibition was insensitive to SR141716A. In the absence of agonist, SR144528 by itself reduced TNF-alpha induced IL-8 release. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Our results show for the first time that 16HBE14o(-) cells respond to virodhamine and CP55,940. CB(1) and CB(2) receptor subtypes mediated activation and inhibition of adenylyl cyclase, respectively. Stimulation of the dominant CB(2) receptor signalling pathway diminished cAMP accumulation and TNF-alpha-induced IL-8 release. These observations may imply that cannabinoids exert anti-inflammatory properties in airways by modulating cytokine release.  (+info)

Activation of cannabinoid CB1 and CB2 receptors suppresses neuropathic nociception evoked by the chemotherapeutic agent vincristine in rats. (66/168)

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: The ability of cannabinoids to suppress mechanical hypersensitivity (mechanical allodynia) induced by treatment with the chemotherapeutic agent vincristine was evaluated in rats. Sites of action were subsequently identified. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Mechanical hypersensitivity developed over the course of ten daily injections of vincristine relative to groups receiving saline at the same times. Effects of the CB1/CB2 receptor agonist WIN55,212-2, the receptor-inactive enantiomer WIN55,212-3, the CB2-selective agonist (R,S)-AM1241, the opiate agonist morphine and vehicle on chemotherapy-induced neuropathy were evaluated. WIN55,212-2 was administered intrathecally (i.t.) or locally in the hindpaw to identify sites of action. Pharmacological specificity was established using competitive antagonists for CB1 (SR141716) or CB2 receptors (SR144528). KEY RESULTS: Systemic administration of WIN55,212-2, but not WIN55,212-3, suppressed vincristine-evoked mechanical allodynia. A leftward shift in the dose-response curve was observed following WIN55,212-2 relative to morphine treatment. The CB1 (SR141716) and CB2 (SR144528) antagonists blocked the anti-allodynic effects of WIN55,212-2. (R,S)-AM1241 suppressed vincristine-induced mechanical hypersensitivity through a CB2 mechanism. Both cannabinoid agonists suppressed vincristine-induced mechanical hypersensitivity without inducing catalepsy. Spinal sites of action are implicated in cannabinoid modulation of chemotherapy-induced neuropathy. WIN55,212-2, but not WIN55,212-3, administered i.t. suppressed vincristine-evoked mechanical hypersensitivity at doses that were inactive following local hindpaw administration. Spinal coadministration of both the CB1 and CB2 antagonists blocked the anti-allodynic effects of WIN55,212-2. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Cannabinoids suppress the maintenance of vincristine-induced mechanical allodynia through activation of CB1 and CB2 receptors. These anti-allodynic effects are mediated, at least in part, at the level of the spinal cord.  (+info)

Peripherally administered non-peptide oxytocin antagonist, L368,899, accumulates in limbic brain areas: a new pharmacological tool for the study of social motivation in non-human primates. (67/168)

Central administration of oxytocin (OT) antagonists inhibits maternal and sexual behavior in non-primates, providing the strongest experimental evidence that endogenous OT facilitates these behaviors. While there have been a few reports that ICV administration of OT increases social behaviors in monkeys, no studies to date have assessed the effects of OT antagonists. Therefore, we studied in rhesus monkeys whether L368,899, a non-peptide antagonist produced by Merck that selectively blocks the human uterine OT receptor, penetrates the CNS after peripheral administration and alters female maternal and sexual behavior. In two studies in four male monkeys, L368,899 was injected iv (1 mg/kg) after which (1) CSF samples were collected at intervals over 4 h and (2) brains were collected at 60 min. Assay of samples confirmed that iv-administered L368,899 entered CSF and accumulated in the hypothalamus, septum, orbitofrontal cortex, amygdala and hippocampus, but not other areas. An adult female monkey was tested for interest in either an infant or sexual behavior, receiving a different iv treatment prior to each test (1 or 3 mg/kg of L368,899 or saline). OT antagonist treatment reduced or eliminated interest in the infant and sexual behavior. These results, although preliminary, are the first to directly implicate endogenous OT in activation of primate maternal interest and sexual behavior. While it remains to be empirically demonstrated that peripherally administered L368,899 blocks central OT receptors, our behavioral findings suggest that this non-peptide antagonist may facilitate testing OT involvement in a variety of social and other behaviors in primates.  (+info)

2-Arachidonoylglycerol enhances the phagocytosis of opsonized zymosan by HL-60 cells differentiated into macrophage-like cells. (68/168)

2-Arachidonoylglycerol is an endogenous ligand for the cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2). While evidence is accumulating that the CB1 receptor plays important regulatory roles in various nervous tissues and cells, the physiological roles of the CB2 receptor, which is abundantly expressed in the immune system, are yet to be determined. In this study, we examined in detail the effect of 2-arachidonoylglycerol on the phagocytosis of opsonized zymosan by HL-60 cells that had differentiated into macrophage-like cells. We found that the addition of 2-arachidonoylglycerol augmented the phagocytosis of opsonized zymosan by the differentiated HL-60 cells. The effect was observed from 1 nM and increased with increasing concentrations of 2-arachidonoylglycerol. Treatment of the cells with SR144528 or pertussis toxin abolished the effect of 2-arachidonoylglycerol, indicating that the CB2 receptor and Gi/o are involved in the augmented phagocytosis. Phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase and extracellular signal-regulated kinase were also suggested to be involved; treatment of the cells with wortmannin or PD98059 abrogated the 2-arachidonoylglycerol-augmented phagocytosis. These results strongly suggest that 2-arachidonoylglycerol, derived from stimulated inflammatory cells, has an important role in augmenting the phagocytosis of invading microorganisms by macrophages/monocytes thereby stimulating inflammatory reactions and immune responses.  (+info)

Anandamide and Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol directly inhibit cells of the immune system via CB2 receptors. (69/168)

This study shows that two cannabinoids, Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and anandamide, induce dose-related immunosuppression in both the primary and secondary in vitro plaque-forming cell assays of antibody formation. The immunosuppression induced by both compounds could be blocked by SR144528, an antagonist specific for the CB(2) receptor, but not by SR141716, a CB(1) antagonist. These studies are novel in that they show that both anandamide and THC are active in the nanomolar to picomolar (for anandamide) range in these assays of immune function, and that both mediate their effects directly on cells of the immune system through the CB(2) receptor.  (+info)

Cannabinoids inhibit noradrenergic and purinergic sympathetic cotransmission in the rat isolated mesenteric arterial bed. (70/168)

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Noradrenaline and ATP are sympathetic co-transmitters. In the rat perfused mesenteric bed cannabinoids have been shown to modify the overall response to sympathetic nerve stimulation. This study has assessed whether cannabinoid receptor activation modulates differentially the noradrenergic and purinergic components of sympathetic vasoconstriction. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Rat mesenteric beds were perfused with physiological salt solution and the effects of cannabinoids on responses to nerve stimulation, or exogenous noradrenaline or alpha,beta-methylene ATP (alpha,beta-meATP; P2X receptor agonist) were determined after raising tone with U46619. The effects of cannabinoids on the noradrenaline and ATP components of sympathetic neurotransmission were assessed using the alpha 1-adrenoceptor antagonist, prazosin, or after P2X receptor desensitization with alpha,beta-meATP. KEY RESULTS: Anandamide, WIN 55,212-2 and CP55,940 attenuated sympathetic neurogenic vasoconstrictor responses. The inhibitory actions of anandamide and WIN 55,212-2 were blocked by LY320135, a CB1 receptor antagonist, but not by SR144528, a CB2 receptor antagonist. The inhibitory actions of CP55,940 were unaffected by LY320135 and SR144528. WIN 55,212-3, the inactive S(-) enantiomer of WIN 55,212-2, had no effect on sympathetic neurogenic responses. None of the cannabinoids affected contractile responses to exogenous noradrenaline or alpha,beta-meATP. Anandamide and WIN 55,212-2 inhibited both the noradrenaline and ATP components of the sympathetic neurogenic contractile responses, with effects on the ATP component being most marked. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: These results indicate that prejunctional CB1-like receptors mediate the sympathoinhibitory action of anandamide and WIN 55,212-2, but not CP55,940, in the rat mesenteric bed. Cannabinoids inhibit both the noradrenergic and purinergic components of sympathetic neurotransmission.  (+info)

The endogenous cannabinoid anandamide inhibits cromakalim-activated K+ currents in follicle-enclosed Xenopus oocytes. (71/168)

The effect of the endogenous cannabinoid anandamide on K(+) currents activated by the ATP-sensitive potassium (K(ATP)) channel opener cromakalim was investigated in follicle-enclosed Xenopus oocytes using the two-electrode voltage-clamp technique. Anandamide (1-90 microM) reversibly inhibited cromakalim-induced K(+) currents, with an IC(50) value of 8.1 +/- 2 microM. Inhibition was noncompetitive and independent of membrane potential. Coapplication of anandamide with the cannabinoid type 1 (CB(1)) receptor antagonist N-(piperidin-1-yl)-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazole -3-carboximide hydrochloride (SR 141716A) (1 microM), the CB(2) receptor antagonist N-[(1S)endo-1,3,3-trimethyl bicyclo heptan-2-yl]-5-(4-chloro-3-methylphenyl)-1-(4-methylbenzyl)-pyrazole-3-carboxamid e (SR144528) (1 microM), or pertussis toxin (5 microg/ml) did not alter the inhibitory effect of anandamide, suggesting that known cannabinoid receptors are not involved in anandamide inhibition of K(+) currents. Similarly, neither the amidohydrolase inhibitor phenylmethylsulfonyl fluoride (0.2 mM) nor the cyclooxygenase inhibitor indomethacin (5 microM) affected anandamide inhibition of K(+) currents, suggesting that the effects of anandamide are not mediated by its metabolic products. In radioligand binding studies, anandamide inhibited the specific binding of the K(ATP) ligand [(3)H]glibenclamide in the oocyte microsomal fractions, with an IC(50) value of 6.3 +/- 0.4 microM. Gonadotropin-induced oocyte maturation and the cromakalim-acceleration of progesterone-induced oocyte maturation were significantly inhibited in the presence of 10 microM anandamide. Collectively, these results indicate that cromakalim-activated K(+) currents in follicular cells of Xenopus oocytes are modulated by anandamide via a cannabinoid receptor-independent mechanism and that the inhibition of these channels by anandamide alters the responsiveness of oocytes to gonadotropin and progesterone.  (+info)

The inhibition of monoacylglycerol lipase by URB602 showed an anti-inflammatory and anti-nociceptive effect in a murine model of acute inflammation. (72/168)

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) is an endocannabinoid whose hydrolysis is predominantly catalysed by the enzyme monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL). The development of MAGL inhibitors could offer an opportunity to investigate the anti-inflammatory and anti-nociceptive role of 2-AG, which have not yet been elucidated. On these bases, URB602, a MAGL inhibitor, was tested in a murine model of inflammation/inflammatory pain. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Acute inflammation was induced by intraplantar injection of lambda-carrageenan into mice. The highest dose to be employed has been selected performing the tetrad assays for cannabimimetic activity in mice. URB602 anti-inflammatory and anti-nociceptive efficacy (assessed by plethysmometer and plantar test, respectively) was evaluated both in a preventive regimen (drug administered 30 min before carrageenan) and in a therapeutic regimen (URB602 administered 30 min after carrageenan). To elucidate the cannabinoid receptor involvement, rimonabant and SR144528, CB1 and CB2 selective antagonists, respectively, were given 15 min before URB602. KEY RESULTS: Systemic administration of URB602 elicited a dose-dependent anti-oedemigen and anti-nociceptive effect that was reversed exclusively by the CB2 receptor antagonist. The efficacy of URB602 persisted also when the compound was administered in a therapeutic regimen, suggesting the ability of URB602 to improve established disease. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: The present report highlighted the ability of the selective MAGL inhibitor, URB602, to prevent and treat an acute inflammatory disease without producing adverse psychoactive effects. The data presented herein also contributed to clarify the physiological role of 2-AG in respect to inflammatory reactions, suggesting its protective role in the body.  (+info)