Marijuana for psoriasis

When we passed the first medical marijuana laws in CA and AZ, opponents mocked the movement saying that doctors would be writing recommendations for people with psoriasis. Guess what, here is evidence that activating the CB1 receptor, as triggered by THC in marijuana, inhibits the inflammation and cell proliferation that cause the disease's miserable and disfiguring side effects. PeerJ. 2013 Feb 19; .A novel control of human keratin expression: cannabinoid receptor 1-mediated signaling down-regulates the expression of keratins K6 and K16 in human keratinocytes in vitro and in situ.Ramot Y, Sugawara K, Zákány N, Tóth BI, Bíró T, Paus R.SourceDepartment of Dermatology, University of Luebeck , Luebeck , Germany ; Department of Dermatology, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center , Jerusalem , Israel.          Abstract: Cannabinoid receptors CB are expressed throughout human skin epithelium. CB1 activation inhibits human hair growth and decreases proliferation of epidermal keratinocytes. Since psoriasis is a chronic hyperproliferative, inflammatory skin disease, it is conceivable that the therapeutic modulation of CB signaling, which can inhibit both proliferation and inflammation, could win a place in future psoriasis management. Given that psoriasis is characterized by up-regulation of keratins K6 and K16, we have investigated whether CB1 stimulation modulates their expression in human epidermis. Treatment of organ-cultured human skin with the CB1-specific agonist, arachidonoyl-chloro-ethanolamide ACEA, decreased K6 and K16 staining intensity in situ. At the gene and protein levels, ACEA also decreased K6 expression of cultured HaCaT keratinocytes, which show some similarities to psoriatic keratinocytes. These effects were partly antagonized by the CB1-specific antagonist, AM251. While CB1-mediated signaling also significantly inhibited human epidermal keratinocyte proliferation in situ, as shown by K6/Ki-67-double immunofluorescence, the inhibitory effect of ACEA on K6 expression in situ was independent of its anti-proliferative effect. Given recent appreciation of the role of K6 as a functionally important protein that regulates epithelial wound healing in mice, it is conceivable that the novel CB1-mediated regulation of keratin 6/16 revealed here also is relevant to wound healing. Taken together, our results suggest that cannabinoids and their receptors constitute a novel, clinically relevant control element of human K6 and K16 expression.

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