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PPAR Research
Volume 2007 (2007), Article ID 23513, 7 pages
Review Article

Cannabinoids: A New Group of Agonists of PPARs

School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Nottingham Medical School, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK

Received 30 April 2007; Accepted 13 September 2007

Academic Editor: J. Vanden Heuvel

Copyright © 2007 Yan Sun and Andy Bennett. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Cannabinoids have been used medicinally and recreationally for thousands of years and their effects were proposed to occur mainly via activation of the G-protein-coupled receptor CB1/CB2 (cannabinoid receptor 1/2). Discovery of potent synthetic analogs of the natural cannabinoids as clinically useful drugs is the sustained aim of cannabinoid research. This demands that these new compounds be free of the psychotropic effects that connected with the recreational use of cannabinoids. In preclinical studies cannabinoids displayed many of the characteristics of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and it seems to be free of unwanted side effects. An increasing number of therapeutic actions of cannabinoid are being reported that do not appear to be mediated by either CB1 or CB2, and recently nuclear receptor superfamily PPARs (peroxisome-proliferator-activated receptors) have been suggested as the target of certain cannabinoids. This review summarizes the evidence for cannabinoid activation on PPARs and possible associated remedial potentials.