Natural Compound May Reduce Brain Trauma Damage

Natural Compound May Reduce Brain Trauma Damage
Posted by FoM on October 04, 2001 at 09:23:49 PT
By Melissa Schorr
Source: Reuters
A compound the brain manufactures in response to trauma may be useful as a treatment for complications resulting from brain injury, Israeli researchers report.``We believe that this compound, that the brain itself produces, may serve as a neuroprotectant agent,'' lead author Esther Shohami, a professor in the School of Pharmacy at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, told Reuters Health.
The compound, known as 2-arachidonoyl glycerol (2-AG), is a cannabinoid, a substance the body produces with a similar structure to chemicals found in the cannabis plant, the source of marijuana.In research published in the October 4th issue of Nature, the investigators found 2-AG at 10 times the normal level in the brains of mice 4 hours after a traumatic injury.The researchers theorize that the compound somehow helps prevent some of the secondary complications associated with brain injury, possibly by reducing the inflammatory response, slowing the production of a toxic brain chemical or boosting the blood supply to the brain immediately after the injury.However, the natural amounts the brain cells produce following trauma probably do not reach high enough levels to be effective, Shohami noted.To investigate the effects of the compound, the researchers synthesized 2-AG and injected it an hour after brain injury had been induced in mice. The mice were evaluated 1, 4 and 7 days after injury.``We found a tremendous improvement in the recovery of the mice,'' Shohami said, noting that there was less excess fluid causing swelling in the brain, better recovery of motor function, and fewer dead brain cells and brain tissue.However, the drug's protection against neurological damage was short-lived, with significant effects lasting only a day after treatment.Shohami said she hopes to eventually investigate the compound on humans who have suffered brain injuries and to extend the timeframe in which the substance could be offered.``Its administration, as a single injection, should be considered as a novel therapeutic modality,'' she said. ``Since the benefit was achieved by a single administration, I do not expect serious side-effects or toxicity to be a major problem.''SOURCE: Nature 2001;413:527-531. Source: Reuters HealthAuthor: Melissa SchorrPublished: October 3, 2001Copyright: 2001 Reuters HealthMedical Marijuana Information Links Medical Marijuana Archives 
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Comment #3 posted by i420 on October 04, 2001 at 15:51:19 PT
POLL !!!!!!!!
There is a poll at Has the ‘War on Drugs’ in the United States been successful? Yes.
  0.0% No.
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Comment #2 posted by tdm on October 04, 2001 at 10:17:18 PT:
You made me laugh out loud. Woke up the cats.Study after study being released showing the healthful and therapeutic effects of cannabinoids. You can be sure that until the drug companies figure out how to profit off of this, the research will be ignored.
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Comment #1 posted by TroutMask on October 04, 2001 at 09:58:11 PT
The Wrong Message
Now that we know this dangerous drug is found in our brain, we must discourage use of the brain so that our children will not get addicted to using it. Otherwise our children will believe that it is okay to use their brain. They'll see other children using their brains and, feeling peer pressure, they will also start using their brains. People are using their brains all over the world and you can see what has happened: crime, poverty and war are rampant.Fortunately our elected officials are already far ahead of this situation. Most of them stopped using their brains long ago and are no longer encumbered by it's effects. They are ready to lead us into a bright and beatiful brain-free world of tomorrow.So just say no to using your brain!-TM
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