Current issue:

Cannabinoids

September 2020 | Vol 22 | N° 3

Editorial

Cannabinoids: for better and for worse

The use of cannabis as a drug has undergone a remarkable change of direction: considered as a symbol of countercultures in past decades, it is presently being hailed as a cure for any number of diseases and conditions. Thus, despite concerns about the safety of cannabis and cannabinoids, quite a…

State-of-the-art

Neurobiology of cannabinoid receptor signaling

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a highly versatile signaling system within the nervous system. Despite its widespread localization, its functions within the context of distinct neural processes are very well discernable and specific. This is remarkable, and the question remains as to how such specificity is achieved. One key player…

Original articles

History of cannabis and the endocannabinoid system

This article retraces the story of cannabis from the earliest contacts of humans with the plant to its subsequent global expansion, its medicinal uses, and the discovery of the endocannabinoid system in the 20th century. Cannabis was attested to around 12 000 years ago near the Altai Mountains in Central…

The endocannabinoid system in modulating fear, anxiety, and stress

The endocannabinoid system is widely expressed in the limbic system, prefrontal cortical areas, and brain structures regulating neuroendocrine stress responses, which explains the key role of this system in the control of emotions. In this review, we update recent advances on the function of the endocannabinoid system in determining the…

Cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system in reward processing and addiction: from mechanisms to interventions

The last decades have seen a major gain in understanding the action of cannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system in reward processing and the development of addictive behavior. Cannabis-derived psychoactive compounds such as Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol and synthetic cannabinoids directly interact with the reward system and thereby have addictive properties. Cannabinoids induce their…

Cannabis points to the synaptic pathology of mental disorders: how aberrant synaptic components disrupt the highest psychological functions

Cannabis can elicit an acute psychotic reaction, and its long-term use is a risk factor for schizophrenia. The main active psychoactive ingredient ∆9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) activates cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptors, which are localized to the terminals of glutamate and GABA neurons in the brain. The endogenous cannabinoids are involved in information…

The endocannabinoidome as a substrate for noneuphoric phytocannabinoid action and gut microbiome dysfunction in neuropsychiatric disorders

The endocannabinoid (eCB) system encompasses the eCBs anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol, their anabolic/catabolic enzymes, and the cannabinoid CB1 and CB2 receptors. Its expansion to include several eCB-like lipid mediators, their metabolic enzymes, and their molecular targets, forms the endocannabinoidome (eCBome). This complex signaling system is deeply involved in the onset, progress,…

Cannabinoids and their therapeutic applications in mental disorders

Mental disorders represent a significant public health burden worldwide due to their high prevalence, chronically disabling nature, and substantial impact on quality of life. Despite growing knowledge of the pathological mechanisms that underlie the development of these disorders, a high percentage of patients do not respond to first-line clinical treatments;…

The costs and benefits of cannabis control policies

As is the case for most drugs, cannabis use has costs and benefits, and so do the policies that attempt to minimize the first and maximize the second. This article summarizes what we know about the harmful effects of recreational cannabis use and the benefits of medical cannabis use under…

Brief report

Free paper

First case report of tDCS efficacy in severe chemsex addiction

Chemsex is an escalating public health issue among men who have sex with men, with potentially severe somatic and psychiatric consequences. Given the limited knowledge and lack of treatment recommendations available in this area, we proposed the use of noninvasive brain stimulation in order to reduce problematic chemsex behavior. This…