Endocannabinoid CB1 antagonists inhibit hepatitis C virus production, providing a novel class of antiviral host targeting agents

Endocannabinoid CB1 antagonists inhibit hepatitis C virus production, providing a novel class of antiviral host targeting agents.

“Direct acting antivirals have significantly improved treatment outcomes in chronic hepatitis C (CHC), but side effects, drug resistance and cost mean that better treatments are still needed.

Lipid metabolism is closely linked with hepatitis C virus (HCV) replication and endocannabinoids are major regulators of lipid homeostasis.

The cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptor mediates these effects in the liver.

Here we investigated whether CB1 blockade inhibits HCV replication.

The antiviral effect of a CB1 antagonist, AM251 was examined…

Treatment with AM251 strongly inhibited HCV RNA (~70%), viral protein (~80%), the production of new virus particles (~70%), and virus infectivity (~90%)…

We suggest that CB1 antagonists may represent an entirely new class of drugs with activity against HCV.

 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25053565


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