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Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2006 Jun;84(2):353-9. Epub 2006 Jun 30.

The cannabinoid CB1 receptor inverse agonist, rimonabant, modifies body weight and adiponectin function in diet-induced obese rats as a consequence of reduced food intake.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, John Maynard Smith Building, University of Sussex, Brighton, BN1 9QG, UK.


The cannabinoid CB1 receptor inverse agonist rimonabant induces hypophagia and body weight loss. Reduced body weight may potentially be due to decreased food intake or to direct metabolic effects of drug administration on energy expenditure. This study uses a paired-feeding protocol to quantify the contributions of energy intake to rimonabant-induced body weight loss. Diet-induced obese (DIO) rats were dosed with rimonabant (3, 10 mg/kg PO once daily) and matched with pair-fed controls. Food intake and body weight were measured daily. Blood samples and adipose tissue were collected on day 15 for measurement of plasma adiponectin and adiponectin mRNA levels. DIO rats treated with rimonabant and pair-fed controls showed very similar changes in body weight. Although tolerance developed to the anorectic effect of rimonabant, total food intake was significantly decreased over the 14-day study period and fully accounted for the observed reductions in body weight. Adiponectin mRNA and plasma adiponectin were elevated in vehicle-treated chow-fed animals compared to obese controls, and did not differ between rimonabant-treated and pair-fed animals. The similarities between rimonabant-treated and pair-fed animals in body weight loss and the absence of differences in measures of adiponectin activity between drug-treated and pair-fed animals suggest that the outcomes of this experiment were solely mediated by the drug-induced reduction in food intake.

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