Cannabidiol activates neuronal Kv7 channels
Han-Xiong Bear Zhang,
Hoor Al Jandal,
Jennifer A Smith,
Clifford J Woolf,
Bruce P. Bean
Posted 21 Aug 2021
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2021.08.20.457154
Posted 21 Aug 2021
Cannabidiol (CBD), a chemical found in the Cannabis sativa plant, is a clinically effective antiepileptic drug whose mechanism of action is unknown. Using a fluorescence-based thallium flux assay, we performed a large-scale screen and found enhancement of flux through heterologously-expressed human Kv7.2/7.3 channels by CBD. Using patch clamp recordings, we found that CBD at low concentrations activates Kv7.2/7.3 channels at subthreshold voltages, with 100 nM CBD producing a doubling of current at -50 mV. CBD shifted the voltage-dependence of channels in the hyperpolarizing direction, producing a shift in the midpoint of activation by about ~-14 mV at 300 nM. CBD also effectively enhanced native M-current in both mouse superior cervical ganglion neurons and rat hippocampal neurons. The potent enhancement of Kv2/7.3 channels by CBD seems likely to contribute to its effectiveness as an antiepileptic drug by reducing neuronal hyperexcitability.
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