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J Neuroinflammation. 2017 Jul 19;14(1):138. doi: 10.1186/s12974-017-0913-7.

Activation of cannabinoid receptor type 2 attenuates surgery-induced cognitive impairment in mice through anti-inflammatory activity.

Author information

1
Department of Anesthesiology, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, 169, Donghu Road, Wuhan, 430071, Hubei, China.
2
Department of Anesthesiology, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, 169, Donghu Road, Wuhan, 430071, Hubei, China. sophie_pm@msn.com.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Neuroinflammation plays a major role in postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD). Accumulated evidence indicates that cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2R) can mediate anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects in part by controlling microglial activity. However, the impact of CB2R on postoperative cognition has not been investigated. We hypothesized that CB2R is involved in surgery-induced cognitive impairment in adult mice.

METHODS:

Adult C57BL/6 mice were subjected to intramedullary fixation surgery for tibial fracture under isoflurane anesthesia and CB2R agonist (JWH133) or CB2R antagonist (AM630) treatment. The mice were trained 24 h prior to surgery using a fear conditioning protocol and assessed in a novel context on postoperative days 1, 3, and 7 to evaluate cognitive function. Open-field testing was performed to evaluate the locomotor activity of the mice. The expression levels of IL-1β, TNF-α, MCP-1, and CB2R in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex were assessed by Western blotting; the expression of microglial marker CD11b in the CA1 area of the hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex was assessed by immunostaining.

RESULTS:

The mice displayed no changes in locomotor activity after surgery and drug treatments. The mice exhibited impaired hippocampal-dependent memory accompanied by an increased expression of proinflammatory factors in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex 1, 3, and 7 days after surgery, while hippocampal-independent memory remained unaffected at the same time points. JWH133 treatment attenuated surgery-induced memory loss, while AM630 treatment aggravated surgery-induced memory loss, paralleled by a decreased or increased expression of proinflammatory factors in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. The expression of CB2R in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex was upregulated following surgery; however, it was downregulated by postoperative treatment with JWH133. Similarly, the expression of CD11b in the CA1 area of the hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex was upregulated following surgery and downregulated by postoperative treatment with JWH133.

CONCLUSIONS:

These findings indicate that CB2R may modulate the neuroinflammatory and cognitive impairment in a mouse model of orthopedic surgery, and the activation of CB2R may effectively ameliorate the hippocampal-dependent memory loss of mice in the early postoperative stage.

KEYWORDS:

Cannabinoid receptor type 2; Neuroinflammation; Postoperative cognitive dysfunction

PMID:
28724382
PMCID:
PMC5518095
DOI:
10.1186/s12974-017-0913-7
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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