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CB1 receptors are G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) abundant in neurons, in which they modulate neurotransmission. The CB1 receptor influence on memory and learning is well recognized, and disease states associated with CB1 receptors are observed in addiction disorders, motor dysfunction, schizophrenia, and in bipolar, depression, and anxiety disorders. Beyond the brain, CB1 receptors also function in liver and adipose tissues, vascular as well as cardiac tissue, reproductive tissues and bone. Signal transduction by CB1 receptors occurs through interaction with Gi/o proteins to inhibit adenylyl cyclase, activate mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK), inhibit voltage-gated Ca2+ channels, activate K+ currents (Kir), and influence nitric oxide (NO) signaling. CB1 receptors are observed in internal organelles as well as plasma membrane. β-Arrestins, adaptor protein AP-3, and G-protein receptor-associated sorting protein 1 (GASP1) modulate cellular trafficking. Cannabinoid Receptor Interacting Protein1a (CRIP1a) is an accessory protein whose function has not been delineated. Factor Associated with Neutral sphingomyelinase (FAN) regulates ceramide signaling. Such diversity in cellular signaling and modulation by interacting proteins suggests that agonists and allosteric modulators could be developed to specifically regulate unique, cell type-specific responses.
Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Wake Forest University Health Sciences, One Medical Center Blvd., Winston-Salem, NC 27157, USA.
Publication date: May 1, 2010
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Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.