Regulations of the endocannabinoid receptor system of glucocorticoid hormones: Implications for Schizophrenia

The onset and development of many mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia, are believed to be affected by stress and the hormones produced as a result of stress. Research has shown that these stress hormones act upon receptors in the brain that interact with the endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system is a neurochemical system which contains receptors that respond to both cannabis (marijuana) and naturally produced substances known as endocannabinoids. People with schizophrenia have been shown to have elevated levels of naturally-occurring endocannabinoids, and there is evidence that alteration of the endocannabinoid system through the use of marijuana reduces the effectiveness of anti-psychotic medication. Matthew Hill is investigating links between the endocannabinoid system, exposure and hormonal responses to stress and the development of schizophrenia. Matthew’s research may improve understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms involved in schizophrenia and suggest future treatments to manage this mental illness.