Smokers trying to quit in the near future can do it with the help of cannabis-based medicines, says a new research.
cannabis-like compounds that exist naturally in our bodies, endocannabinoids,
scientists at The University of Nottingham are exploring the potential for
treating conditions as diverse as obesity, diabetes, depression and addiction
to substances like nicotine.
"It is clear that
there is very realistic potential for cannabinoids as medicines. Scientists are
looking at a range of possible applications," said Dr Steve Alexander,
Associate Professor in the School of Biomedical Sciences.
Kendall, a cellular pharmacologist at the University said: "The brain is full
of cannabinoid receptors. And so, not surprisingly with diseases like
depression and anxiety, there's a great deal of interest in exploiting these
receptors and in doing so, developing anti-depressant compounds."
believes that endocannabinoids could be a crucial link to addictive behaviour:
"We know that the endocannabinoid system is intimately involved in reward
pathways and drug seeking behaviour. So this tends to indicate that that if the
link involving endocannabinoids and the reward pathway, using inhibitors, can
be interrupted, it could turn down the drive to seek addictive agents like
cannabinoids have also been shown to bring down blood pressure, it is hoped
that related compounds can be used in patients with conditions like
Dr Alexander said:
"In terms of getting better medicines the endocannabinoid system has a lot to
offer. The range of cannabis-related medicines is currently limited, but by
increasing our knowledge in this area we can increase our stock."
The study is published in The British Journal of