The Cannabinoid System is a group of over twenty fatty acid binding proteins that are produced naturally by the human body. This system is also referred to as the endocannabinoid network, and it is currently believed to promote physical homeostasis by controlling a wide range of physiological functions, including body temperature, appetite and sleep, metabolism, blood pressure, heart rate, digestion, heart rhythm, and more.
It has been shown that the Endogenous Cannabinoid System is responsible for the control of many aspects of the human central nervous system (CNS), and is thus responsible for many ailments that affect the body both physically and psychologically. There are two main categories of Cannabinoid Type One receptors, which are collectively referred to as CB1 and CB2. The primary effect of the Cannabinoids is the regulation of synaptic activity at synapses in the brain, but they can also cause major effects at cellular level, such as increasing the production of neurotransmitters in the brain and reducing inflammation of brain cells.
In recent years, the use of Cannabinoids has increased dramatically due to their powerful psychological benefits. The first category of Cannabinoids, those of the CB1 type, are believed to act directly on the brain receptors to reduce anxiety and epilepsy symptoms. They have also shown promise in treating depression, chronic pain, nausea, glaucoma, menopause, chemotherapy-induced diseases, and AIDS. Additionally, many believe that they work as antioxidants, reducing the damage caused by low oxygen levels in the brain. While much is still known about the benefits of the endocannabinoid system (including its role in the health of the brain), the most immediate medical application of Cannabinoids occurs within the context of chronic pain management.
Endogenous Cannabinoid System (ECS) products include a variety of pharmaceuticals that contain either one or more natural ligands of the fatty acids and terpenoids described above. These products function by interacting with a series of cell types within the body to modulate pain signals and release neurochemicals that facilitate a feeling of well being. ECS Products have been approved for clinical use in the U.S., including for chronic pain, spasticity, neuropathic pain and migraines. As new research emerges, the wide range of uses for Endogenous Cannabinoid System will undoubtedly continue to grow.
Although many researchers are still interested in understanding the mechanism of action for the endocannabinoids, the recent focus has been on their potential benefit as analgesics and antipyretics. For example, clinical trials involving administration of Delta-9 Tetrahydrocannabinol ( THC ) showed that the drug reduced the level of pain experienced by patients with glaucoma. Similarly, patients suffering from cancer were shown to reduce their nausea and vomiting when given THC as an intravenous dose.