Scientists in the U.S., have discovered a protein manufactured by the brain that acts like marijuana to relieve pain and stimulate appetite. The protein, known as a peptide, was found in mice. Like another peptide known to bind to the THC receptor affected by marijuana, this peptide does too—and it activates the receptor as well. The researchers hope to develop a drug that activates and blocks the receptor like this new peptide, while avoiding the hazards of marijuana use. Said one: “The next step is for scientists to come up with new medicines that eliminate the nasty side of pot—a better joint, so to speak.”
'A better joint'
A protein made by the brain acts like marijuana