Study: Cannabidiol provides long-lasting protection against the deleterious effects of inflammation in a viral model of multiple sclerosis …


•CBD is a beneficial immune regulator in TMEV-IDD model, with long-term effects.
•CBD treatment improves motor deficits in the chronic phase of TMEV-IDD.
•CBD decreases VCAM-1, CCL2/CCL5 chemokines and TNFα/IL-1β.
•Adenosine A2A receptors mediate some of the CBD effects both in vivo and in vitro.


Inflammation in the central nervous system (CNS) is a complex process that involves a multitude of molecules and effectors, and it requires the transmigration of blood leukocytes across the blood–brain barrier (BBB) and the activation of resident immune cells. Cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychotropic cannabinoid constituent of Cannabis sativa, has potent anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties. Yet, how this compound modifies the deleterious effects of inflammation in TMEV-induced demyelinating disease (TMEV-IDD) remains unknown. Using this viral model of multiple sclerosis (MS), we demonstrate that CBD decreases the transmigration of blood leukocytes by downregulating the expression of vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1), chemokines (CCL2 and CCL5) and the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1β, as well as by attenuating the activation of microglia. Moreover, CBD administration at the time of viral infection exerts long-lasting effects, ameliorating motor deficits in the chronic phase of the disease in conjunction with reduced microglial activation and pro-inflammatory cytokine production. Adenosine A2A receptors participate in some of the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD, as the A2A antagonist ZM241385 partially blocks the protective effects of CBD in the initial stages of inflammation. Together, our findings highlight the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD in this viral model of MS and demonstrate the significant therapeutic potential of this compound for the treatment of pathologies with an inflammatory component.



Cannabidiol, Multiple sclerosis, Inflammation, VCAM-1, Chemokines, Theiler’s murine encephalomyelitis virus, Infiltrates, Microglia, Adenosine


Neurobiology of Disease
Volume 59, November 2013, Pages 141–150

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