1 Introduction</h5> As early as the 18th century BCE, cannabis/marijuana was recorded in “Shen Nong's Herbal Classic” by the Chinese emperor Shen Nong as a drug for menstrual symptoms, gout, rheumatism, malaria, and constipation. In the 19th century, British physicians started to prescribe it widely for conditions ranging from epilepsy to rheumatism and abdominal symptoms. The psychological addiction resulting from the abuse of cannabis is the main concern limiting its therapeutic use. In the 20th century, Δ 9 -tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) was identified as the main bioactive constituent of cannabis, and its molecular targets in the human body, the cannabinoid receptor family, were discovered. Since then, the cannabinoid system has attracted more and more attention from physicians and scientific researchers. Current studies focus on the function of this unique system and the synthesis of cannabinoid-based drugs. In this review, we will discuss the possible function of the endogenous cannabinoid system in the modulation of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), which may be a potential target for treatment.</P>2 The endocannabinoid system</h5> After the identification of plant-derived constituents of cannabis, endogenous cannabinoid binding sites, called cannabinoid receptors, were found and cloned in the early 1990s. Shortly thereafter, substances were found occurring naturally in
International Immunopharmacology – Elsevier
Published: May 1, 2015
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