Tag Archives: Cannabis and Dopamine

Cannabis for Parkinson’s

Endocannabinoid System

Modulates a huge range of physiological functions, including mood, cognition, motor control, feeding behavior, and pain. The System is primarily located in the basal ganglia and has been found involved in several movement disorders, including Parkinson’s disease 

Activating Cannabis Receptors could help treat lack of dopamine-induced Dyskinesia. 

The compounds working within the endocannabinoid system can affect dopamine levels.

Cannabis could help reduce patients’s symptoms.

Parkinson’s Disorder

Parkinson’s disease is characterized by a loss of dopaminergic neurons in the midbrain. It’s a disease where the central nervous system suffers a long-term progressive deterioration. This affects movement, making walking difficult, as well as causing shaking in the limbs and stiff painful muscles. Some patients suffer difficulty sleeping and may have emotional problems.

Dyskinesia

Caused from a lack of dopamine within the brain, specifically, the dopamine receptor.

Dopamine cannot penetrate the blood-brain membrane. Levodopa enters through the membrane and creates dopamine within the brain reducing dyskinesia. 

The Cannabinoid System is partially responsible for controlling the dopamine levels. Clinical and animal model data support the view that modulation of cannabinoid function may exert an antidyskinetic effect.

Levodopa (L-DOPA)

An amino acid precursor of dopamine with antiparkinsonian properties. Levodopa is a is converted to dopamine by DOPA decarboxylase and can cross the blood-brain barrier. When in the brain, levodopa is decarboxylated to dopamine and stimulates the dopaminergic receptors, thereby compensating for the depleted supply of endogenous dopamine seen in Parkinson’s disease. The mechanism assures adequate concentrations of levodopa reach the central nervous system.

Levodopa reduces brain metabolism in patients with Parkinson’s disease, and reduces Parkinson’s related pattern activity, correlating with clinical improvement. 

Dopamine

A recent hypothesis stipulates that the drop of dopamine levels within the brain is caused by an autoimmune process. 

As a fundamental regulator of inflammation. It has been shown that dopaminergic signalling pathways are key players promoting homeostasis between the central nervous system and the immune system.

The entire process is manipulated by the endocannabinoid system. Further Studies of various mechanisms can help us advance medicine significantly.

Chemical Properties 

Formula: C8H11NO2

Molar mass: 153.18 g/mol

Density: 1.26 g/cm³

Boiling point: 128 °C

Chemical Structure