Use of cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonists for the treatment of metabolic disorders.Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2009 Feb; 23(1):103-16.BP
Abdominal obesity is associated with numerous metabolic abnormalities, including insulin resistance, impaired glucose tolerance/type-2 diabetes, and atherogenic dyslipidaemia with low high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, high triglycerides, and increased small dense low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. A proportion of these metabolic disorders may be attributed to increased endocannabinoid activity. The selective cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptor antagonist rimonabant has been shown to reduce body weight, waist circumference, insulin resistance, triglycerides, dense LDL, C-reactive protein (CRP), and blood pressure, and to increase HDL and adiponectin concentrations in both non-diabetic and diabetic overweight/obese patients. Besides an improvement in glucose tolerance in non-diabetic subjects, a reduction of 0.5-0.7% in haemoglobin A1C (HbA(1c)) levels was consistently observed in various groups of patients with type-2 diabetes. Almost half the metabolic changes could not be explained by weight loss, supporting direct peripheral effects of rimonabant. Ongoing studies should demonstrate whether improved metabolic disorders with CB1 receptor antagonists (rimonabant, taranabant, etc.) would translate into fewer cardiovascular complications among high-risk individuals.