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Role of endocannabinoids in regulating drug dependence

Authors Parolaro D, Vigano’ D, Realini N, Rubino T

Published 15 January 2008 Volume 2007:3(6) Pages 711—721


Daniela Parolaro, Daniela Vigano’, Natalia Realini, Tiziana Rubino
Neuroscience Center, DBSF, University of Insubria, Busto Arsizio, Italy
Abstract: This review will discuss the latest knowledge of how the endocannabinoid system might be involved in treating addiction to the most common illicit drugs. Experimental models are providing increasing evidence for the pharmacological management of endocannabinoid signaling not only to block the direct reinforcing effects of cannabis, opioids, nicotine and ethanol, but also for preventing relapse to the various drugs of abuse, including opioids, cocaine, nicotine, alcohol and metamphetamine. Preclinical and clinical studies suggest that the endocannabinoid system can be manipulated by the CB1 receptor antagonist SR141716A, that might constitute a new generation of compounds for treating addiction across different classes of abused drugs.
Keywords: Endocannabinoids, drug dependence, opioids, nicotine, alcohol, psychostimulants

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