The purpose of this review is to examine and summarize studies assessing the relevance of the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in diabetic kidney disease (DKD).
Endocannabinoids and endocannabinoid receptors of type 1 (CB1R) and of type 2 (CB2R) are present in the normal kidney. Expression of CB1R and CB2R is altered in experimental DKD. Studies in experimental animals and cultured kidney cells show a beneficial effect of peripheral CB1R blockade and CB2R activation in DKD and an even greater efficacy of a combined treatment. Preclinical studies confirm that both CB1R and CB2R are implicated in the pathogenesis of DKD and may represent novel targets for treatment. However, we need to gain a better understanding of the ECS prior to move to human clinical trial.
Albuminuria; Cannabinoid receptor of type 1; Cannabinoid receptor of type 2; Diabetic nephropathy; Endocannabinoids; Renal fibrosis