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Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. 2002 Feb-Mar;66(2-3):161-71.

CB(1) and CB(2) receptor-mediated signalling: a focus on endocannabinoids.

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Forbes Norris ALS Research Center, California Pacific Medical Centre, 2351 Clay Street, Suite 416, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA.


The discovery that the major psychoactive component of marijuana activated two G-protein coupled receptors prompted the search for the endogenous cannabinoid ligands now termed endocannabinoids. To date three putative ligands have been isolated, all consisting of arachidonic acid linked to a polar head group. Both synthetic and endogenous cannabinoids have been the focus of extensive study over the past few years. The signalling events produced by endocannabinoids as compared with Delta(9) -THC and synthetic cannabinoids contain many similarities. However, as research focuses more on endogenous ligands the divergence between these classes of compounds grows. This review focuses upon the developments in endocannabinoid signal transduction from receptor-mediated activation of common G-protein linked effector pathways through downstream regulation of gene transcription.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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