A low-?9tetrahydrocannabinol cannabis extract induces hyperphagia in rats
ABSTRACT Appetite stimulation via partial agonism of cannabinoid type 1 receptors by Δ9tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9THC) is well documented and can be modulated by non-Δ9THC phytocannabinoids. Δ9THC concentrations sufficient to elicit hyperphagia induce changes to both appetitive (reduced latency to feed) and consummatory (increased meal one size and duration) behaviours. Here, we show that a cannabis extract containing too little Δ9THC to stimulate appetite can induce hyperphagia solely by increasing appetitive behaviours. Twelve, male Lister hooded rats were presatiated before treatment with a low-Δ9THC cannabis extract (0.5, 1.0, 2.0 and 4.0 mg/kg). Hourly intake and meal pattern data were recorded and analyzed using one-way analyses of variance followed by Bonferroni post-hoc tests. The cannabis extract significantly increased food intake during the first hour of testing (at 4.0 mg/kg) and significantly reduced the latency to feed versus vehicle treatments (at doses ≥1.0 mg/kg). Meal size and duration were unaffected. These results show only the increase in appetitive behaviours, which could be attributed to non-Δ9THC phytocannabinoids in the extract rather than Δ9THC. Although further study is required to determine the constituents responsible for these effects, these results support the presence of non-Δ9THC cannabis constituent(s) that exert a stimulatory effect on appetite and likely lack the detrimental psychoactive effects of Δ9THC.
- SourceAvailable from: Francesca Borrelli[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol binds cannabinoid (CB(1) and CB(2)) receptors, which are activated by endogenous compounds (endocannabinoids) and are involved in a wide range of physiopathological processes (e.g. modulation of neurotransmitter release, regulation of pain perception, and of cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and liver functions). The well-known psychotropic effects of Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol, which are mediated by activation of brain CB(1) receptors, have greatly limited its clinical use. However, the plant Cannabis contains many cannabinoids with weak or no psychoactivity that, therapeutically, might be more promising than Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol. Here, we provide an overview of the recent pharmacological advances, novel mechanisms of action, and potential therapeutic applications of such non-psychotropic plant-derived cannabinoids. Special emphasis is given to cannabidiol, the possible applications of which have recently emerged in inflammation, diabetes, cancer, affective and neurodegenerative diseases, and to Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabivarin, a novel CB(1) antagonist which exerts potentially useful actions in the treatment of epilepsy and obesity.Trends in Pharmacological Sciences 10/2009; 30(10):515-27. · 9.25 Impact Factor