How many sites of action for endocannabinoids to control energy metabolism?

U Pagotto, C Cervino, V Vicennati, G Marsicano, B Lutz, R Pasquali
Int J Obes. 2006-03-29; 30(S1): S39-S43
DOI: 10.1038/sj.ijo.0803277

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1. Int J Obes (Lond). 2006 Apr;30 Suppl 1:S39-43.

How many sites of action for endocannabinoids to control energy metabolism?

Pagotto U(1), Cervino C, Vicennati V, Marsicano G, Lutz B, Pasquali R.

Author information:
(1)Department of Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology, Endocrinology Unit,
Center for Applied Biomedical Research (C.R.B.A.), S. Orsola-Malpighi General
Hospital, Bologna, Italy.

The promising results obtained by clinical trials using Rimonabant to tackle
visceral obesity and related disorders recently promoted a remarkable impulse to
carry out detailed investigations into the mechanisms of action of
endocannabinoids in regulating food intake and energy metabolism. The
endocannabinoid system has been known for many years to play an important role in
the modulation of the neuronal pathways mediating the rewarding properties of
food. However, in the last few years, with the advanced understanding of the
crucial role of the hypothalamic neuronal network in the regulation of appetite,
several studies have also directed attention to the orexigenic role of the
endocannabinoid system, substantiating the well known appetite stimulating
properties of derivatives of Cannabis sativa. Furthermore, the last 2 years have
seen a number of relevant publications emphasizing the role of endocannabinoids
as significant players in various peripheral metabolic processes. To date, the
roles of the endocannabinoid system in influencing energy metabolism have proved
to be more complex than was formerly believed. However, the diverse ability to
modulate both central and peripheral processes highlights the pivotal involvement
of the endocannabinoid system in the control of metabolic processes. This review
describes the roles of endocannabinoids and the cannabinoid type 1 receptor (CB1)
in the control of energy balance.

DOI: 10.1038/sj.ijo.0803277
PMID: 16570104 [Indexed for MEDLINE]

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