Michelle Miller

Document Type

Honors Project

First Advisor

Dr. Robyn Puffenbarger

Degree Award Date

Spring 2005


Regulation, CB2 Receptor, Promoter Gene Studies, Cannabinoid receptors, endocannabinoids


Biology | Cell Biology | Cellular and Molecular Physiology | Laboratory and Basic Science Research


The human immune system is an intricate network of cells and receptors that signal the body to produce antibodies that fight against foreign organisms and allow the body to recover from infection. Receptors are extremely important to the immune system because they are first to receive the 'message' of infection and deploy the correct response. The CB2 receptor is found in the spleen and haemopoietic cells. It mediates the inhibition of adenylate cyclase and the activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases (2). The CB2 receptor activates in response to a number of endocannabinoids, including anadamide. The signals of endocannabinoids are terminated by F AAH ( fatty acid amide hydro lase), inside CB2 expressing cells. Cannabinoid receptors are linked to G-proteins inside the cell, which allows for quick transmission of the signal to the nucleus. CB2' s are involved in a variety of immune cell functions and are also known to mediate with inflammatory pain. Transcriptional regulation of the promoter region can determine how much CB2 receptor cells express. Regulation of CB2 receptors expression in immune cells will be the primary focus of this project.