[Blocking the endocannabinoid system — weight reduction and cardiovascular risk management]

P Bramlage, W Böcking, W Kirch
Deutsche Medizinische Wochenschrift 2005 March 24, 130 (12): 665-8
Blocking the endocannabinoid system is an option that substantially reduces cardiovascular risk beyond reducing body weight. Endocannabinoids and their receptors are expressed in the central nervous system as well as in the peripheral organs and regulate the central circuits for food uptake and peripheral metabolic circuits. Within the context of food uptake the cannabinoid receptors 1 (CB (1)-receptor) is of crucial importance. Its stimulation with Delta (9)-tetrahydrocannabiol (Delta (9)-THC) or its blockade with rimonabant are clinically relevant therapeutic means to maintain body weight. Rimonabant is the first of a new class of drugs, that interferes with the endocannabinoid system by blocking the CB (1)-Receptor. In recent clinical studies a substantial reduction of body weight and waist circumference was associated with an improvement of the cardiovascular risk profile, which was marked by increased HDL-cholesterol, serum triglycerides and improved insulin sensivity.

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