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Cannabinoid Receptors in Diabetic Kidney Disease

Abstract

Purpose of Review

The purpose of this review is to examine and summarize studies assessing the relevance of the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in diabetic kidney disease (DKD).

Recent Findings

Endocannabinoids and endocannabinoid receptors of type 1 (CB1R) and of type 2 (CB2R) are present in the normal kidney. Expression of CB1R and CB2R is altered in experimental DKD. Studies in experimental animals and cultured kidney cells show a beneficial effect of peripheral CB1R blockade and CB2R activation in DKD and an even greater efficacy of a combined treatment.

Summary

Preclinical studies confirm that both CB1R and CB2R are implicated in the pathogenesis of DKD and may represent novel targets for treatment. However, we need to gain a better understanding of the ECS prior to move to human clinical trial.

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Acknowledgments

We apologize to all the investigators whose important works have not been cited due to space restrictions.

Funding

This research was supported by the European Federation for the Study of Diabetes (EFSD), the Società Italiana di Diabetologia (SID), the Compagnia di San Paolo Foundation and the Piedmont Region.

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Correspondence to Gabriella Gruden.

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Conflict of Interest

F. Barutta, R. Mastrocola, S. Bellini, G. Bruno, and G. Gruden declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Microvascular Complications—Nephropathy

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Barutta, F., Mastrocola, R., Bellini, S. et al. Cannabinoid Receptors in Diabetic Kidney Disease. Curr Diab Rep 18, 9 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11892-018-0975-7

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11892-018-0975-7

Keywords

  • Diabetic nephropathy
  • Endocannabinoids
  • Albuminuria
  • Cannabinoid receptor of type 1
  • Cannabinoid receptor of type 2
  • Renal fibrosis