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Life Sci. 2004 Jun 18;75(5):633-8.

Cannabidiol increases Fos expression in the nucleus accumbens but not in the dorsal striatum.

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Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine, Campus USP, Av. Bandeirantes 3900, Ribeirão Preto, SP, 14049-900, Brazil.


Preclinical and clinical studies suggest that cannabidiol (CBD), a major component of Cannabis sativa, could produce antipsychotic effects without causing extra-pyramidal side-effects. In the present paper we employed the detection of Fos protein to investigate neuronal activation in the dorsal striatum and nucleus accumbens of male Wistar rats after systemic administration of CBD (120 mg/kg), haloperidol (1 mg/kg) or clozapine (20 mg/kg). Only haloperidol was able to increase the number of Fos immunoreactive neurons (FIr) in the dorsal striatum (vehicle: 0.07 +/- 0.07/0.1 mm(2), haloperidol: 28.3 +/- 8.9/0.1 mm(2), p < 0.01). In contrast, both haloperidol and CBD significantly increased FIr in the nucleus accumbens (Vehicle: 0 +/- 0/0.1 mm(2), haloperidol: 7.2 +/- 2.7/0.1 mm(2), CBD: 4.0 +/- 1.9/0.1 mm(2), p < 0.05). Clozapine also produced a barely significant increase in FIr (3.0 +/- 1.7/0.1 mm(2), p = 0.062). These results show that CBD is able to induce FIr in a limbic- but not in a motor-related area.

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