Neurochemical Research

, Volume 43, Issue 8, pp 1511–1518 | Cite as

Systemic Injections of Cannabidiol Enhance Acetylcholine Levels from Basal Forebrain in Rats

  • Eric Murillo-RodríguezEmail author
  • Gloria Arankowsky-Sandoval
  • Nuno Barbosa Rocha
  • Rodrigo Peniche-Amante
  • André Barciela Veras
  • Sérgio Machado
  • Henning Budde
Original Paper


Cannabis sativa is a plant that contains more than 500 components, of which the most studied are Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Several studies have indicated that CBD displays neurobiological effects, including wake promotion. Moreover, experimental evidence has shown that injections of CBD enhance wake-related compounds, such as monoamines (dopamine, serotonin, epinephrine, and norepinephrine). However, no clear evidence is available regarding the effects of CBD on additional wake-related neurochemicals such as acetylcholine (ACh). Here, we demonstrate that systemic injections of CBD (0, 5, 10 or 30 mg/kg, i.p.) at the beginning of the lights-on period, increase the extracellular levels of ACh collected from the basal forebrain and measured by microdialysis and HPLC means. Moreover, the time course effects on the contents of ACh were present 5 h post-injection of CBD. Altogether, these data demonstrate that CBD increases ACh levels in a brain region related to wake control. This study is the first to show the effects of ACh levels in CBD-treated rats and suggests that the basal forebrain might be a site of action of CBD for wakefulness modulation.


Cannabis Dopamine Monoamines Sleep Wakefulness 







High performance liquid chromatography


Linear regression analysis





This work was supported by The University of California Institute for Mexico and the United States (UC MEXUS) and Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACyT; Grant: CN-17-19) and Escuela de Medicina, Universidad Anáhuac Mayab (Grant: PresInvEMR2017) given to E.M-R.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eric Murillo-Rodríguez
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Gloria Arankowsky-Sandoval
    • 3
  • Nuno Barbosa Rocha
    • 2
    • 4
  • Rodrigo Peniche-Amante
    • 5
  • André Barciela Veras
    • 2
    • 6
  • Sérgio Machado
    • 2
    • 7
    • 8
    • 9
  • Henning Budde
    • 2
    • 10
    • 11
    • 12
  1. 1.Laboratorio de Neurociencias Moleculares e Integrativas, Escuela de Medicina, División Ciencias de la SaludUniversidad Anáhuac MayabMéridaMexico
  2. 2.Intercontinental Neuroscience Research GroupMéridaMexico
  3. 3.Centro de Investigaciones Regionales “Dr. Hideyo Noguchi”Universidad Autónoma de YucatánMéridaMexico
  4. 4.Health SchoolPolytechnic Institute of PortoPortoPortugal
  5. 5.Coordinación de Psicología Organizacional, División de Estudios Profesionales, Facultad de PsicologíaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoMexico CityMexico
  6. 6.Universidade Catolica Dom BoscoCampo GrandeBrazil
  7. 7.Laboratory of Panic and Respiration, Institute of PsychiatryFederal University of Rio de JaneiroRio de JaneiroBrazil
  8. 8.Salgado de Oliveira UniversityRio de JaneiroBrazil
  9. 9.Physical Activity Neuroscience LaboratoryPhysical Activity Sciences Postgraduate Program-Salgado de Oliveira University (UNIVERSO)Rio de JaneiroBrazil
  10. 10.Faculty of Human SciencesMedical School HamburgHamburgGermany
  11. 11.Physical Activity, Physical Education, Health and Sport Research Centre (PAPESH), Sports Science Department, School of Science and EngineeringReykjavik UniversityReykjavíkIceland
  12. 12.Lithuanian Sports UniversityKaunasLithuania

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