In Vitro and In Vivo Anti-Inflammatory Potential of Cannabichromene Isolated from Hemp

Plants (Basel). 2023 Nov 25;12(23):3966. doi: 10.3390/plants12233966.


Cannabichromene (CBC), a non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in Cannabis sativa, has recently been shown to possess several medicinal properties. However, how CBC produces anti-inflammatory effects and the mechanisms of this remain poorly studied. Therefore, we extracted and purified the CBC from the Cannabis sativa cv. pink pepper (hemp cultivar). The efficacy of CBC in reducing inflammation in RAW 264.7 macrophages and a λ-carrageenan-induced mouse model was then evaluated. CBC had no cytotoxicity up to a concentration of 20 μM and inhibited nitric oxide production by approximately 50% at a concentration of 20 μM. In addition, CBC treatment significantly inhibited causes of inflammation such as inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) at both the mRNA and protein levels. Moreover, CBC suppressed LPS-stimulated inflammation in RAW 264.7 cells by downregulating the nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kB) and mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways (MAPK). Furthermore, our in vivo experiments confirmed that the λ-carrageenan-induced increase in the levels of the cytokines iNOS, IL-1β, and IL-6 was abrogated following treatment with CBC. Therefore, CBC has potential anti-inflammatory effects and may be useful for preventing or treating inflammation.

Keywords: RAW 264.7 cells; cannabichromene; cytokines; inflammation; pink pepper.