Research on the chemistry and pharmacology of cannabinoids and endocannabinoids has reached enormous proportions, with approximately 15,000 articles on Cannabis sativa L. and cannabinoids and over 2,000 articles on endocannabinoids. The present review deals with the history of the Cannabis sativa L. plant, its uses, constituent compounds and their biogeneses, and similarity to compounds from Radula spp. In addition, details of the pharmacology of natural cannabinoids, as well as synthetic agonists and antagonists are presented. Finally, details regarding the pioneering isolation of the endocannabinoid anandamide, as well as the pharmacology and potential therapeutic uses of endocannabinoid congeners are presented.
(c) 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.