Inhibition of spontaneous neurotransmission in the nucleus of solitary tract of the rat by the cannabinoid agonist WIN 55212-2 is not via CB1 or CB2 receptors.Brain Res 2008; 1200:1-9BR
Cannabinoids have been shown to modulate central autonomic regulation and baroreflex control of blood pressure. Both CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors have been described in the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS), which receives direct afferent projections of cardiovascular reflexes. In the present study we evaluated the effects of WIN 55212-2 (WIN), a cannabinoid agonist, on fast neurotransmission in the NTS. We recorded spontaneous post-synaptic currents using the whole-cell configuration in NTS cells in brainstem slices from young rats (25-30 days old). Application of 5 microM WIN inhibited the frequency of both glutamatergic and GABAergic sPSCs, without affecting their amplitudes. Effects of WIN were not blocked by application of the CB1 antagonist AM251, the CB2 antagonist AM630 or the vanniloid receptor TRPV1 antagonist AMG9810, suggesting that the effect of WIN is via a non-CB1 non-CB2 receptor. Neither the CB1/CB2 agonist HU210 nor the CB1 agonist ACPA affected the frequency of sPSCs. We conclude WIN inhibits the neurotransmission in the NTS of young rats via a receptor distinct from CB1 or CB2.