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Prostaglandins Other Lipid Mediat. 2000 Apr;61(1-2):71-84.

Cardiovascular effects of endocannabinoids--the plot thickens.

Author information

1
Department of Pharmacology, Medical College of Virginia of Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA. gkunos@hsc.vcu.edu

Abstract

Cannabinoids, the bioactive ingredients of the marijuana plant, are best known for their psychoactive properties, but they also influence other physiological processes, such as cardiovascular variables. Endocannabinoids are recently identified lipid mediators that act as natural ligands at cannabinoid receptors and mimic most of the biological effects, including the cardiovascular actions, of plant-derived cannabinoids. In experimental animals, the most prominent component of the cardiovascular effects of cannabinoids is prolonged hypotension and bradycardia. This review focuses on the possible mechanisms underlying these effects. The emerging evidence suggesting that endocannabinoids may be involved in the peripheral regulation of vascular tone under certain conditions is also discussed.

PMID:
10785543
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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