A clearer understanding of the mechanisms underlying the development and progression of diabetic neuropathy is likely to indicate new directions for the treatment of this complication of diabetes. In the present study we investigated the expression of cannabinoid CB(1) receptors in models of diabetic neuropathy. PC12 cells were differentiated into a neuronal phenotype with nerve growth factor (NGF) (50 ng/ml) in varying concentrations of glucose (5.5-50 mM). CB(1) receptor expression was studied at the mRNA level by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and at the protein level via immunohistochemical and Western blot analysis. CB(1) expression was also compared in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) removed from streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats versus control animals. Total neurite length induced by NGF was reduced in cells cultured in 20 to 50 mM glucose at day 6 (P <0.01 versus 5.5 mM; n = 6). Cell viability assays conducted in parallel on day 6 confirmed that the total cell numbers were not significantly different among the various glucose concentrations (P = 0.86; n = 12). RT-PCR, immunohistochemical, and Western blot analysis all revealed down-regulation of the CB(1) receptor in cells treated with high glucose (P <0.05; n = 4-5 for each), and in DRG removed from diabetic rats compared with controls (P <0.01; n = 5 for immunohistochemistry, and n = 3 for Western blot). These results suggest that high glucose concentrations are associated with decreased expression of CB(1) receptors in nerve cells. Given the neuroprotective effect of cannabinoids, a decline in CB(1) receptor expression may contribute to the neurodegenerative process observed in diabetes.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Journal of pharmacology and experimental therapeutics|
|Publication status||Published - 2007|
- PRIMARY SENSORY NEURONS
- VANILLOID VR1 RECEPTOR
- ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM
- DIFFERENTIAL CHANGES