Pro-resolution, protective and anti-nociceptive effects of a cannabis extract in the rat gastrointestinal tract.
Farncombe Family Digestive Health Research Institute, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. email@example.com.
Cannabis is widely used for treating a number of gastrointestinal ailments, but its use is associated with several adverse effects, particularly when the route of administration is via smoking. In the present study, we tested the effects (in rats) of a simple extract of medicinal cannabis (called “MFF”) for its ability to promote resolution of colitis, to prevent gastric damage induced by naproxen, and to reduce gastric distention-induced visceral pain. Intracolonic, but not oral administration of MFF dose-dependently reduced the severity of hapten-induced colitis, an effect not reduced by pretreatment with antagonists of CB1 or CB2 receptors. Significant improvement of symptoms (diarrhea, weight loss) and healing of ulcerated tissue was evident with MFF treatment at doses that did not produce detectable urinary levels of 9-Δ-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). MFF increased colonic hydrogen sulfide synthesis in healthy rats, but not in rats with colitis, and had no effect on colonic prostaglandin E2 synthesis. Orally, but not systemically administered MFF dose-dependently reduced the severity of naproxen-induced gastric damage, and a CB1 antagonist reversed this effect. MFF prevented gastric distention-induced visceral pain via a CB2-dependent mechanism. These results demonstrate that a simple extract of medicinal cannabis can significantly enhance resolution of inflammation and injury, as well as prevent injury, in the gastrointestinal tract. Interestingly, different cannabinoid receptors were involved in some of the effects. MFF may serve as the basis for a simple preparation of cannabis that would produce beneficial effects in the GI tract with reduced systemic toxicity.
[PubMed – in process]
- Analgesics/administration & dosage*
- Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal/administration & dosage
- Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal/adverse effects
- Colitis/drug therapy*
- Gastrointestinal Tract/drug effects
- Hydrogen Sulfide/metabolism
- Naproxen/adverse effects
- Plant Extracts/administration & dosage*
- Protective Agents/administration & dosage*
- Rats, Wistar
- Receptor, Cannabinoid, CB1/antagonists & inhibitors
- Receptor, Cannabinoid, CB1/metabolism
- Receptor, Cannabinoid, CB2/antagonists & inhibitors
- Receptor, Cannabinoid, CB2/metabolism
- Stomach Ulcer/chemically induced
- Stomach Ulcer/drug therapy*
- Stomach Ulcer/metabolism
- Visceral Pain/drug therapy
- Visceral Pain/metabolism