Cannabinoids - Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis | cannabisMD

Cannabinoids – Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Cannabinoids as a Potential Therapeutic for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Cannabinoids are found in the marijuana plant. Medical marijuana is said to have immunosuppressive properties that can act as a treatment option for chronic pain management. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is one constituent of cannabinoids and is responsible for the psychoactive effects.

Cannabidiol is another constituent and is said to have anti-inflammatory abilities. Cannabinoid receptors are located in the endocannabinoid system (ECS) and these allow cannabinoids to work. The ECS is a vital system within the body that regulates bodily function and help regulate many organs.

The CB1 receptor is expressed in the central nervous system whereas the CB2 receptor is expressed by immune cells. This means that agonists of the CB2 receptor should not give you any of the psychoactive effects. This paper investigates the therapeutic side effects of cannabinoids in arthritis.

Here is the full scientific article if you wish to download it.

Main Points

  • CB2 receptor expressed in the synovial tissue
  • CB2 receptor as a target for therapeutic cannabinoids?

CB2 Receptor Expressed in the Synovial Tissue

A selective CB2 agonist was chosen (JWH133) to be induced in a patient with murine collagen type II arthritis. Immunohistochemistry showed that CB2 was expressed much more in the synovial tissues rheumatoid joints than in those of osteoarthritis joints.

This was confirmed by a method called the western blot analysis. JWH133 inhibited a decrease in malignant cells arising from the rheumatoid joint pain and osteoclastogenesis of peripheral blood monocytes. Administration of JWH133 seemed to reduce the effects of arthritis in mice.

CB2 Receptor as a Target for Therapeutic Cannabinoids?

Inflammatory cell infiltration and bone destruction are symptoms of arthritis and it seems that the right dosage of cannabidiol (CBD) can lead to reducing inflammation, and therefore leading to therapeutic effects among people with RA. This study suggests that this selective CB2 agonist can possibly be the go-to drug to therapeutically inhibit the production of inflammatory bodies arising from arthritis.

Jonathan Neilly
Jonathan Neilly
Jonathan Neilly is registered with the British Psychological Society, breaking the taboo on mental health issues is one of the driving forces in his life. His background in biomedicine gives him additional understanding of the factors that work together to influence the human condition.

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