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Papers of the Week

Papers: 30 Dec 2023 - 5 Jan 2024


Function (Oxf)




Cannabigerolic Acid (CBGA) Inhibits the TRPM7 Ion Channel Through its Kinase Domain.


Suzuki S, Wakano C, Monteilh-Zoller MK, Cullen AJ, Fleig A, Penner R


Cannabinoids are a major class of compounds produced by the plant Cannabis sativa. Previous work has demonstrated that the main cannabinoids cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) can have some beneficial effects on pain, inflammation, epilepsy, and chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. While CBD and THC represent the two major plant cannabinoids, some hemp varieties with enzymatic deficiencies produce mainly cannabigerolic acid (CBGA). We recently reported that CBGA has a potent inhibitory effect on both Store-Operated Calcium Entry (SOCE) via inhibition of Calcium Release-Activated Calcium (CRAC) channels as well as currents carried by the channel-kinase TRPM7. Importantly, CBGA prevented kidney damage and suppressed mRNA expression of inflammatory cytokines through inhibition of these mechanisms in an acute nephropathic mouse model. In the present study, we investigate the most common major and minor cannabinoids to determine their potential efficacy on TRPM7 channel function. We find that approximately half of the tested cannabinoids suppress TRPM7 currents to some degree, with CBGA having the strongest inhibitory effect on TRPM7. We determined that the CBGA-mediated inhibition of TRPM7 requires a functional kinase domain, is sensitized by both intracellular Mg⋅ATP and free Mg and reduced by increases in intracellular Ca. Finally, we demonstrate that CBGA inhibits native TRPM7 channels in a B lymphocyte cell line. In conclusion, we demonstrate that CBGA is the most potent cannabinoid in suppressing TRPM7 activity and possesses therapeutic potential for diseases in which TRPM7 is known to play an important role such as cancer, stroke, and kidney disease.