Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a chronic and fluctuating neuropsychiatric condition characterized by intrusive thoughts (obsessions) and repetitive ritualistic behaviors (compulsions). Recent evidence suggests that endocannabinoids (eCBs) can play a role in this disorder. Cannabinoid receptors are significantly expressed in most parts of the main circuitry related to OCD, the cortico-striatal-thalamic circuitry, being able to modulate the release of key neurotransmitters such as glutamate, dopamine, GABA, and serotonin. Preclinical studies using the marble burying test show that enhancement of CB1 function by direct agonists or inhibitors of the enzymes responsible for the metabolism of eCBs (including the phytocannabinoid cannabidiol) presents anti-compulsive behavior activity.
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