‘Cannabinoids’ is a broad term covering a group of natural products from Cannabis sativa, one of which locks on to specific receptors – protein molecules on the surface of cells – known as cannabinoid receptors. Over the past decades scientists have found that cannabinoid receptors and their endogenous ligands, the endocannabinoids, are involved in a vast array of physiological functions, including helping to control brain activity, energy metabolism, heart function, the immune system and even reproduction.
In Cannabinoids, Vincenzo Di Marzo has assembled contributions from international experts to provide the definitive guide to what continues to be a rapidly developing research field. After an introductory historical chapter, the book continues by looking at the biochemical, genetic and molecular elements of cannabinoids, followed by chapters covering their role in health and disease. The final chapter outlines the need for a new nomenclature to reflect the complex and multi-disciplinary nature of this area.