Evidence for novel cannabinoid receptors

Pharmacol Ther. 2005 May;106(2):133-45. doi: 10.1016/j.pharmthera.2004.11.005. Epub 2005 Jan 11.


Cannabinoids, including the bioactive constituents of the marijuana plant, their synthetic analogs, and endogenous lipids with cannabinoid-like activity, produce their biological effects by interacting with specific receptors. To date, two G protein-coupled cannabinoid receptors have been identified by molecular cloning, CB1 receptors mainly expressed in the brain and mediating most of the neurobehavioral effects of cannabinoids and CB2 receptors expressed by immune and hematopoietic tissues. Recent findings indicate that some cannabinoid effects are not mediated by either CB1 or CB2 receptors, and in some cases there is compelling evidence to implicate additional receptors in these actions. These include transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) receptors and as-yet-unidentified receptors implicated in the endothelium-dependent vasodilator effect of certain cannabinoids and in the presynaptic inhibition of glutamatergic neurotransmission in the hippocampus. The case for these additional receptors is being reviewed here.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Cannabinoid Receptor Antagonists
  • Cannabinoids / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Cannabinoids / pharmacology*
  • Drug Interactions
  • Humans
  • Ion Channels / pharmacology
  • Piperidines / pharmacology
  • Pyrazoles / pharmacology
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid* / drug effects
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid* / physiology
  • Rimonabant
  • TRPV Cation Channels


  • Cannabinoid Receptor Antagonists
  • Cannabinoids
  • Ion Channels
  • Piperidines
  • Pyrazoles
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid
  • TRPV Cation Channels
  • TRPV1 protein, human
  • Rimonabant