Cannabidiol (CBD) is known for its vasorelaxant (including in the human pulmonary artery), anti-proliferative and anti-inflammatory properties. The aim of our study was to examine the potential preventive effect of chronic CBD administration (10 mg/kg/day for three weeks) on monocrotaline (MCT)-induced pulmonary hypertension (PH) rats. PH was connected with elevation of right ventricular systolic pressure; right ventricle hypertrophy; lung edema; pulmonary artery remodeling; enhancement of the vasoconstrictor and decreasing vasodilatory responses; increases in plasma concentrations of tissue plasminogen activator, plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1 and leukocyte count; and a decrease in blood oxygen saturation. CBD improved all abovementioned changes induced by PH except right ventricle hypertrophy and lung edema. In addition, CBD increased lung levels of some endocannabinoids (anandamide, N-arachidonoyl glycine, linolenoyl ethanolamide, palmitoleoyl ethanolamide and eicosapentaenoyl ethanolamide but not 2-arachidonoylglycerol). CBD did not affect the cardiopulmonary system of control rats or other parameters of blood morphology in PH. Our data suggest that CBD ameliorates MCT-induced PH in rats by improving endothelial efficiency and function, normalization of hemostatic alterations and reduction of enhanced leukocyte count determined in PH. In conclusion, CBD may be a safe, promising therapeutic or adjuvant therapy agent for the treatment of human pulmonary artery hypertension.
Keywords: PAI-1, cannabidiol, endocannabinoids, isolated vessels, monocrotaline, pulmonary hypertension, t-PA