Many people live with chronic pain, and in some cases, cannabis can provide relief. But the drug also can significantly impact memory and other cognitive functions. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Journal of Medicinal Chemistry have developed a peptide that, in mice, allowed Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main component of Cannabis sativa, to fight pain without the side effects.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 20% of adults in the U.S. experienced chronic pain in 2019. Opioids, the mainstay for severe pain management, are effective, but patients can easily become addicted to them. In some studies, medical marijuana has been helpful in relieving pain from migraines, neuropathy, cancer and other conditions, but the side effects present hurdles for widespread therapeutic use.
Previously, researchers identified two peptides that disrupt an interaction between a receptor...
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