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Drugs of the Future
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Drugs Fut 2005, 30(8): 807
ISSN 0377-8282
e-ISSN 2013-0368
Copyright 2005 Clarivate
CCC: 0377-8282
DOI: 10.1358/dof.2005.030.08.915811
The role of cannabinoids in preventing the neurodegenerative process occurring in Alzheimer's disease
De Ceballos, M.L., Guzman, M.
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most prevalent neurodegenerative disorder and accounts for at least 50% of dementia cases. During the last decades, great strides have been made in our understanding of the molecular and cellular events leading to the pathology of AD, and results of some preclinical studies have been promising. However, only a few therapies have been introduced into the clinic. The characterization of the cannabinoid system within the last years has led to the development of cannabinoid-based therapies for the treatment of various diseases. In particular, the neuroprotective effects of this class of drugs against acute brain damage and their antiinflammatory properties prompted us to study cannabinoid receptors in AD brains and their possible neuroprotective effects in both in vivo and in vitro models. We found that the functioning of cannabinoid receptors is dramatically reduced in AD brain tissue and that cannabinoids prevent b-amyloid peptide-induced neurotoxicity and cognitive decline in rats, effects which may be due to their ability to inhibit microglial activation both in vivo and in vitro. These findings may be the basis for the use of cannabinoids as a therapeutic approach for AD.

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