For his work on the cardiovascular activity of cannabinoids (chemical compounds derived from cannabis), Yehoshua Maor was one of the winners of this year’s Kaye Innovation Awards, presented on June 13 during the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s 69th meeting of the Board of Governors.
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) accounts for about one-third of all deaths in industrialized countries, and is the leading reason for visits there to physicians as well as for drug prescriptions. However, not all patients respond well to the drugs available. There is no “ideal’ hypotensive (blood pressure lowering) drug.
The cannabis plant – also known as hashish or marijuana – through its chemical compounds -- cannabinoids -- has been shown to have a beneficial, hypotensive effect. However, a drawback in the therapeutic use of cannabinoids has been its undesirable psychotropic properties – production of hallucinatory effects. Attempts to separate the hypotensive action from the psychotropic properties of cannabinoids have achieved only partial success until now.
Working under the supervision of Prof. Raphael Mechoulam at the Hebrew University School of Pharmacy, Maor, who was born in Brazil and immigrated to Israel in 1998, has created a synthetic version of a minor cannabis constituent named cannabigerol, which is devoid of psychotropic activity.
In laboratory experiments with rats in collaboration with Prof. Michal Horowitz of the Department of Environmental Physiology, it was found that this novel compound reduced blood pressure when administered to the rats in relatively low doses. Additional testing also showed that the compound also brought about another beneficial effect -- relaxation of the blood vessels. A further beneficial property observed in work carried out with Prof. Ruth Gallily of the Lautenberg Center for General and Tumor Immunology, was that the compounds produced an anti-inflammatory response.
Maor believes that these qualities have the potential for development of a valuable new clinical drug with a major market potential, especially for patients suffering from inflammation of the blood vessels as the result of hypertension, and others with metabolic irregularities.
Maor already has won international recognition for his work with cannabanoids, resulting from his collaborative work with Garry Milman, another Ph.D. student in the laboratory of Prof. Mechoulam, for the discovery of an endogenous compound found in the brain which causes vaso-relaxation.
Maor begin a post-doctoral fellowship in the fall at the Harvard University Medical School, where he plans to continue his research.
The Kaye Innovation Awards have been given annually since 1994. Isaac Kaye of England, a prominent industrialist in the pharmaceutical industry, established the awards to encourage faculty, staff and students of the Hebrew University to develop innovative methods and inventions with good commercial potential which will benefit the university and society.
Jerry Barach | alfa
Gentle sensors for diagnosing brain disorders
29.09.2016 | King Abdullah University of Science and Technology
New imaging technique in Alzheimer’s disease - opens up possibilities for new drug development
28.09.2016 | Lund University
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.
In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...
'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.
Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine
21.10.2016 | Information Technology
21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences