Expression of the CB1 and CB2 receptor messenger RNAs during embryonic development in the rat.
ABSTRACT We mapped the distribution of CB1 and CB2 receptor messenger RNAs in the developing rat to gain insight into how cannabinoids may affect embryogenesis. In situ hybridization histochemistry studies were done using riboprobes specific for CB1 or CB2 receptor messenger RNAs. We found that CB1 and CB2 receptor messenger RNAs are expressed in the placental cone and in the smooth muscle of the maternal uterus at the earliest gestational periods studied [from eight days of gestation (E8) through E12]. In the embryo, as early as E11, CB1 receptor messenger RNA is expressed in some cells of the neural tube and, at later embryological stages (from E15 to E21), in several distinct structures within the central nervous system. In addition, high levels of CB1 receptor messenger RNA were also found in areas of the peripheral nervous system such as the sympathetic and parasympathetic ganglia, in the retina and in the enteric ganglia of the gastrointestinal tract. In addition to neural structures, high levels of the CB1 receptor messenger RNA were also present in two endocrine organs, the thyroid gland and the adrenal gland. On the other hand, CB2 receptor messenger RNA is expressed exclusively in the liver of the embryo as early as E13. The region-specific expression of CB1 and CB2 receptor messenger RNAs suggests that these receptors have a functional role during embryogenesis.
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ABSTRACT: Transient Receptor Potential Vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) subunits form a polymodal cation channel responsive to capsaicin, heat, acidity and endogenous metabolites of polyunsaturated fatty acids. While originally reported to serve as a pain and heat detector in the peripheral nervous system, TRPV1 has been implicated in the modulation of blood flow and osmoregulation but also neurotransmission, postsynaptic neuronal excitability and synaptic plasticity within the central nervous system. In addition to its central role in nociception, evidence is accumulating that TRPV1 contributes to stimulus transduction and/or processing in other sensory modalities, including thermosensation, mechanotransduction and vision. For example, TRPV1, in conjunction with intrinsic cannabinoid signaling, might contribute to retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axonal transport and excitability, cytokine release from microglial cells and regulation of retinal vasculature. While excessive TRPV1 activity was proposed to induce RGC excitotoxicity, physiological TRPV1 activity might serve a neuroprotective function within the complex context of retinal endocannabinoid signaling. In this review we evaluate the current evidence for localization and function of TRPV1 channels within the mammalian retina and explore the potential interaction of this intriguing nociceptor with endogenous agonists and modulators.Cells. 09/2014; 3(3):914-938.
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ABSTRACT: Local environmental cues are indispensable for axonal growth and guidance during brain circuit formation. Here, we combine genetic and pharmacological tools, as well as systems neuroanatomy in human fetuses and mouse models, to study the role of endocannabinoid and Slit/Robo signalling in axonal growth. We show that excess 2-arachidonoylglycerol, an endocannabinoid affecting directional axonal growth, triggers corpus callosum enlargement due to the errant CB1 cannabinoid receptor-containing corticofugal axon spreading. This phenotype mechanistically relies on the premature differentiation and end-feet proliferation of CB2R-expressing oligodendrocytes. We further show the dependence of both axonal Robo1 positioning and oligodendroglial Slit2 production on cell-type-specific cannabinoid receptor activation. Accordingly, Robo1 and/or Slit2 manipulation limits endocannabinoid modulation of axon guidance. We conclude that endocannabinoids can configure focal Slit2/Robo1 signalling to modulate directional axonal growth, which may provide a basis for understanding impaired brain wiring associated with metabolic deficits and prenatal drug exposure.Nature Communications 07/2014; 5:4421. · 10.74 Impact Factor