Inhibition of intestinal motility by anandamide, an endogenous cannabinoid

Eur J Pharmacol. 1997 Dec 11;340(2-3):R7-8.


The endogenous cannabinoid ligand anandamide (arachidonylethanolamide) inhibited the intestinal passage of a charcoal meal when administered s.c. in mice at doses ranging from 0.1 to 50 mg/kg. This effect was prevented by the cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist SR141716A [N-(piperidin-1-yl)-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-4-me thyl-1H-pyrazole-3-carboxamide x HCl] (1 mg/kg s.c.), but it was not affected by the anandamide transport inhibitor, N-(4-hydroxyphenyl) arachidonylethanolamide (AM404) (50 mg/kg, s.c.). The results indicate that anandamide modulates intestinal motility in mice by activating cannabinoid CB1 receptors. They also suggest that anandamide transport, which was previously shown to participate in terminating neural and vascular responses to anandamide, does not contribute to anandamide inactivation in intestinal tissue.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arachidonic Acids / pharmacology*
  • Cannabinoids / pharmacology*
  • Cell Membrane / drug effects
  • Cell Membrane / metabolism
  • Endocannabinoids
  • Gastrointestinal Motility / drug effects*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Piperidines / pharmacology
  • Polyunsaturated Alkamides
  • Pyrazoles / pharmacology
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid
  • Receptors, Drug / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Rimonabant


  • Arachidonic Acids
  • Cannabinoids
  • Endocannabinoids
  • Piperidines
  • Polyunsaturated Alkamides
  • Pyrazoles
  • Receptors, Cannabinoid
  • Receptors, Drug
  • Rimonabant
  • anandamide
  • N-(4-hydroxyphenyl)arachidonylamide