US researchers: Stimulated cannabinoid system could treat Alzheimer’s

Researchers at the Roskamp Institute are focused on helping prevent and treat alzheimer's disease (Image via Solares Photography)

Researchers at the Roskamp Institute in Florida have found a link between a stimulated cannabinoid system and the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease

While this isn’t the first study to suggest that cannabinoids may prove useful for the prevention or treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, it is the first to provide how this is happening.

Head researcher of the study, Corbin Bachmeier, explained that people suffering from Alzheimer’s could gain from using cannabinoid receptor stimulation.

A cannabinoid is one of a class of diverse chemical compounds that acts on cannabinoid receptors in cells that alter neurotransmitter release in the brain.

weed, research, marijuana
Research study linking alzhemeir’s disease to cannabinoids (Image via Solares Photography)

Research

After observation, it was found that the LRP1 protein was found to have increased by 50 percent in the brain after cannabinoid treatment.

The LRP1 protein is responsible for transporting beta-amyloid across the blood-brain barrier.

Plaques form when beta-amyloid, also a protein, clump together. Beta-amyloid comes from a larger protein found in the fatty membrane surrounding nerve cells.

The most damaging form of beta-amyloid may be groups of a few pieces rather than the plaques themselves. The small clumps may block cell-to-cell signaling at synapses.

Having more LRP1 might means less beta-amyloid will be left behind in the brain.

What did the researchers do?

The researchers at the institute stimulated the cannabinoid receptors and inhibited enzymes that degrade endocannabinoids in the mice to increase levels of endocannabinoids in the body.

What they found is that this beta-amyloid cleared across the blood-brain.

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