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Papers of the Week

Papers: 11 Dec 2021 - 17 Dec 2021

Pharmacology/Drug Development

2021 Dec 13


The Cannabidiol Analog PECS-101 Prevents Chemotherapy-Induced Neuropathic Pain via PPARγ Receptors.


Silva N R, Gomes F I F, Lopes A H P, Cortez I L, Dos Santos J C, Silva C E A, Mechoulam R, Gomes F V, Cunha T M, Guimarães F S
Neurotherapeutics. 2021 Dec 13.
PMID: 34904193.


Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) is the main dose-limiting adverse effect of chemotherapy drugs such as paclitaxel (PTX). PTX causes marked molecular and cellular damage, mainly in the peripheral nervous system, including sensory neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG). Several studies have shown the therapeutic potential of cannabinoids, including cannabidiol (CBD), the major non-psychotomimetic compound found in the Cannabis plant, to treat peripheral neuropathies. Here, we investigated the efficacy of PECS-101 (former HUF-101), a CBD fluorinated analog, on PTX-induced neuropathic pain in mice. PECS-101, administered after the end of treatment with PTX, did not reverse mechanical allodynia. However, PECS-101 (1 mg/kg) administered along with PTX treatment caused a long-lasting relief of the mechanical and cold allodynia. These effects were blocked by a PPARγ, but not CB1 and CB2 receptor antagonists. Notably, the effects of PECS-101 on the relief of PTX-induced mechanical and cold allodynia were not found in macrophage-specific PPARγ-deficient mice. PECS-101 also decreased PTX-induced increase in Tnf, Il6, and Aif1 (Iba-1) gene expression in the DRGs and the loss of intra-epidermal nerve fibers. PECS-101 did not alter motor coordination, produce tolerance, or show abuse potential. In addition, PECS-101 did not interfere with the chemotherapeutic effects of PTX. Thus, PECS-101, a new fluorinated CBD analog, could represent a novel therapeutic alternative to prevent mechanical and cold allodynia induced by PTX potentially through the activation of PPARγ in macrophages.