Cannabis (Cannabis sativa), popularly known as marijuana, is the most commonly used psychoactive substance and is considered illicit in most countries worldwide. However, a growing body of research has provided evidence of the therapeutic properties of chemical components of cannabis known as cannabinoids against several diseases including Alzheimer’s disease (AD), multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia and glaucoma; these have prompted changes in medicinal cannabis legislation. The relaxation of legal restrictions and increased socio-cultural acceptance has led to its increase in both medicinal and recreational usage. Several biochemically active components of cannabis have a range of effects on the biological system. There is an urgent need for more research to better understand the molecular and biochemical effects of cannabis at a cellular level, to understand fully its implications as a pharmaceutical drug. Proteomics technology is an efficient tool to rigorously elucidate the mechanistic effects of cannabis on the human body in a cell and tissue-specific manner, drawing conclusions associated with its toxicity as well as therapeutic benefits, safety and efficacy profiles. This review provides a comprehensive overview of both in vitro and in vivo proteomic studies involving the cellular and molecular effects of cannabis and cannabis-derived compounds.
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