Cannabinoid Receptor-Related Orphan G Protein-Coupled Receptors

Adv Pharmacol. 2017;80:223-247. doi: 10.1016/bs.apha.2017.04.004. Epub 2017 Jun 12.


Of the druggable group of G protein-coupled receptors in the human genome, a number remain which have yet to be paired with an endogenous ligand-orphan GPCRs. Among these 100 or so entities, 3 have been linked to the cannabinoid system. GPR18, GPR55, and GPR119 exhibit limited sequence homology with the established CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors. However, the pharmacology of these orphan receptors displays overlap with CB1 and CB2 receptors, particularly for GPR18 and GPR55. The linking of GPR119 to the cannabinoid receptors is less convincing and emanates from structural similarities of endogenous ligands active at these GPCRs, but which do not cross-react. This review describes the evidence for describing these orphan GPCRs as cannabinoid receptor-like receptors.

Keywords: GPR119; GPR18; GPR55; Lysophosphatidylinositol; N-Arachidonoylglycine; N-Oleoylethanolamine.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cannabinoids / chemistry
  • Cannabinoids / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Ligands
  • Orphan Nuclear Receptors / metabolism*
  • Phylogeny
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid / genetics
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction


  • Cannabinoids
  • Ligands
  • Orphan Nuclear Receptors
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid