Is cannabis an effective treatment for joint pain?

R.J. Miller and R.E. Miller  (September 2017)

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In spite of the fact that it has been used for this purpose for thousands of years, it has to be concluded that rigorous clinical evidence is really not available supporting this claim at this point in time. On the other hand, there are numerous surveys suggesting that patients themselves are convinced that they do benefit from using it.

Cannabis use and bone mineral density: NHANES 2007–2010

Donald Bourne, Wesley Plinke, Elizabeth R. Hooker, Carrie M. Nielson  (March 2017)

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Cannabis use is rising in the USA. Its relationship to cannabinoid signaling in bone cells implies its use could affect bone mineral density (BMD) in the population. In a national survey of people ages 20–59, we found no association between self-reported cannabis use and BMD of the hip or spine.

A collaboration investigating endocannabinoid signalling in brain and bone

Andreas Zimmer  (February 2016)

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This short review provides a personal account of an interdisciplinary collaboration between Itai Bab from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the author. It describes the discovery of the endocannabinoid system in bone and the analysis of its functions. I am summarising the role of CB1 signalling as a modulator of sympathetic inhibition of bone formation. Thus, activation of CB1 receptors on sympathetic nerve terminals in bone, presumably from endocannabinoids released from apposing osteoblasts, reduces the inhibition of bone formation of sympathetic norepinephrine. CB2 receptors on osteoblasts and osteoclasts also modulate the proliferation and functions of these cells. Thus, activation of CB2 stimulates bone formation and represses bone resorption, whereas the genetic disruption of CB2 results in an osteoporosis-like phenotype.

The endocannabinoid system and bone

M Pura, P Vaňuga, Vnitrni Lekarstvi  (January 2016)

Both major endocannabinoids (anandamid and 2-arachidonoylglycerol), endocannabinoid receptors – CB1-receptor (CB1R) a CB2-receptor (CB2R) and the endocannabinoid metabolizing enzymes are present or expressed in osteoblasts and osteoclasts. Previous studies identified multiple risk and protective variants of CNR2 gene dealing with the relationship to bone density and/or osteoporosis. Selective CB1R/ CB2R-inverse agonists/antagonists and CB2R-inverse agonists/antagonists are candidates for prevention of bone mass loss and combined antiresorptive and anabolic therapy for osteoporosis.Key words: cannabinoid receptors – endocannabinoids – marijuana – osteoporosis.

Iron Overload Causes Osteoporosis In Thalassemia Major Patients Through Interaction With Transient Receptor Potential Vanilloid Type 1(TRPV1) Channels

Francesca RossiSilverio PerrottaGiulia BelliniLivio LuongoChiara TortoraDario SiniscalcoMatteo FranceseMarco TorellaBruno NobiliVincenzo Di MarzoSabatino Maione  (December 2014)

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The pathogenesis of bone resorption in β-thalassemia major is multifactorial and our understanding of the underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms remains incomplete. Considering the emerging importance of the endocannabinoid/endovanilloid system in bone metabolism, it may be instructive to examine a potential role for this system in the development of osteoporosis in patients with β-thalassemia major and its relationship with iron overload and iron chelation therapy.

The endovanilloid/endocannabinoid system: a new potential target for osteoporosis therapy

Rossi F, Bellini G, Luongo L, Torella M, Mancusi S, De Petrocellis L, Petrosino S, Siniscalco D, Orlando P, Scafuro M, Colacurci N, Perrotta S, Nobili B, Di Marzo V, Maione S  (May 2011)

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Human osteoclasts express functional TRPV1 channels, CB1/CB2 cannabinoid receptors and endocannabinoid/endovanilloid synthetic/catabolic enzymes. Pharmacologic manipulation of this system can modulate osteoclast activity. Here, through multidisciplinary approaches, we demonstrate that enzymes and receptors of the endocannabinoid/endovanilloid system are differently expressed in osteoclasts from menopausal women without or with osteoporosis.