Stiftung Tierärztliche Hochschule Hannover (TiHo)TiHo eLib

Hippocampal expression of the cannabinoid receptor type 1 in canine epilepsy

Canine drug-resistant epilepsy is a prevailing issue in veterinary neurology. Alternative or additional treatment with cannabinoids is showing promising results in seizure management. A crucial component of the endocannabinoid system, cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1R), is heavily involved in the control of neurotransmitter release. Knowledge of its distribution in the epileptic brain would serve a better understanding of disease pathology and application of cannabinoids in dogs with epilepsy. CB1R distribution was assessed in sub-regions of hippocampus of dogs with idiopathic epilepsy, structural epilepsy and without cerebral pathology. In dogs with idiopathic epilepsy, significantly decreased CB1R expression compared to control animals was observed in CA1. In dogs with structural epilepsy, a significant increase in CB1R signal intensity in comparison to controls was observed. CB1R expression was higher in the structural group as compared to the idiopathic. Double immunofluorescence showed co-localization between CB1R and an astrocytic marker in about 50% of cells, regardless of the diagnosis. In summary, CB1R expression in canine hippocampus undergoes modification by the epileptic process and the direction of this change depends on the etiology of the disease. The distinct disease-associated CB1R expression needs to be considered in new treatment development for dogs with epilepsy.

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