Sigal Fleisher-Berkovich, Yvonne Ventura, Maya Amoyal, Arik Dahan, Valeria Feinshtein, Leenor Alfahel, Adrian Israelson, Nirit Bernstein, Jonathan Gorelick and Shimon Ben-Shabat


February 16, 2023


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a widespread chronic neuroinflammatory and neurodegenerative disease. Microglia play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of MS via the release of cytokines and reactive oxygen species, e.g., nitric oxide. Research involving the role of phytocannabinoids in neuroinflammation is currently receiving much attention. Cannabigerol is a main phytocannabinoid, which has attracted significant pharmacological interest due to its non-psychotropic nature. In this research, we studied the effects of cannabigerol on microglial inflammation in vitro, followed by an in vivo study. Cannabigerol attenuated the microglial production of nitric oxide in BV2 microglia and primary glial cells; concomitant treatment of the cells with cannabigerol and telmisartan (a neuroprotective angiotensin receptor blocker) decreased nitric oxide production additively. Inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) expression was also reduced by cannabigerol. Moreover, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), a major cytokine involved in MS, was significantly reduced by cannabigerol in both cell cultures. Next, we studied the effects of cannabigerol in vivo using a mice model of MS, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). The clinical scores of EAE mice were attenuated upon cannabigerol treatment; additionally, lumbar sections of EAE mice showed enhanced neuronal loss (relative to control mice), which was restored by cannabigerol treatment. Altogether, the set of experiments presented in this work indicates that cannabigerol possesses an appealing therapeutic potential for the treatment of MS.


DOI: 10.3390/biom13020376


Fleisher-Berkovich, S., Ventura, Y., Amoyal, M., Dahan, A., Feinshtein, V., Alfahel, L., … & Ben-Shabat, S. (2023). Therapeutic Potential of Phytocannabinoid Cannabigerol for Multiple Sclerosis: Modulation of Microglial Activation In Vitro and In Vivo. Biomolecules, 13(2), 376.