• Article

Cannabimimetic properties of ajulemic acid

Side effects of marijuana-based drugs and synthetic analogs of Delta(9)- tetrahydrocannabinol ( Delta(9)- THC), including sedation and dysphoria, have limited their therapeutic application. Ajulemic acid ( AJA), a side-chain synthetic analog of Delta(8)- THC- 11- oic acid, has been reported to have anti-inflammatory properties without producing undesired psychoactive effects. Moreover, it has been suggested that AJA does not interact with cannabinoid receptors to produce its pharmacological effects. The aim of the present study was to conduct a thorough evaluation of the pharmacological effects of AJA then to determine whether actions at cannabinoid receptor ( CB) 1 mediated these effects. This study evaluated the psychoactive and analgesic effects of AJA by examining its cannabimimetic properties in ICR mice ( i. e., antinociception, catalepsy, hypothermia, and hypomobility), its discriminative stimulus effects in Long Evans rats trained in a two- lever Delta(9)- THC ( 3.0 mg/ kg) versus vehicle drug discrimination procedure, and its antihyperalgesia effects in a rat model of inflammatory pain [ complete Freund's adjuvant ( CFA)-induced mechanical hyperalgesia]. Lastly, antagonism tests with SR 141716A [ N-( piperidin- 1- yl)- 5-( 4- chlorophenyl)- 1-( 2,4-dichlorophenyl)- 4- methyl- 1H- pyrazole- 3- carboximide hydrochloride], CB 1 receptor antagonist, were conducted. These studies demonstrated that AJA shares a number of CB 1- mediated pharmacological properties with Delta(9)- THC, including cannabimimetic, discriminative stimulus, and antihyperalgesic effects. Furthermore, a separation between doses that produced antinociception and those that produced the other pharmacological effects in mice was not observed. Moreover, AJA showed nearly equipotency for therapeutic efficacy in the CFA model and for substitution in Delta(9)- THC discrimination. In summary, this study shows that AJA, like Delta(9)- THC, exhibits psychoactive and therapeutic effects at nearly equal doses in preclinical models, suggesting similar limitations in their putative therapeutic profiles


Vann, RE., Cook, CD., Martin, BR., & Wiley, J. (2007). Cannabimimetic properties of ajulemic acid. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, 320(2), 678-686.