Events & Seminars > Event Details


4:00 pm
Room 304, Chemistry Building

Targeting Endocannabinoid Regulating Enzymes to Treat Pain: Preclinical Assessment


Professor Aron Lichtman
Virginia Commonwealth University

Hosted by: Professor Ken Hsu

The endogenous cannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglyercol (2-AG), the most prevalent endocannabinoid expressed in the CNS, is regulated by the biosynthetic enzymes diacylglycerol lipase (DAGL)-α and –β and the degradative enzyme monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL). This presentation will provide an overview of studies examining the impact of inhibiting each of these enzymes in a variety of mouse models of inflammatory and neuropathic pain. Seemingly paradoxical evidence has emerged from these studies in which inhibition of DAGL or inhibition of MAGL reverses nociceptive behavior in pathological models of pain. Whereas the antinociceptive effects of MAGL inhibitors are mediated by cannabinoid receptors, DAGL inhibitors produce antinociception through a cannabinoid receptor independent pathway. It is likely that the antinociceptive effects of DAGL inhibitors are mediated through their known inhibitory actions on the formation of arachidonic acid and concomitant formation of autocoids, such as PGE2, as well as proinflammatory cytokines. Taken together, the results of these studies suggest that inhibitors of biosynthetic enzymes and hydrolytic enzymes of 2-AG represent novel potential strategies to treat neuropathic and inflammatory pain through distinct mechanisms of action.


Professor Lichtman is a professor in the Department of PHarmacology & TOxicology