In vitro effects of psychoactive and non-psychoactive cannabinoids on immature rat sertoli cell function


We have examined the effects of psychoactive and non-psychoactive cannabinoids on isolated immature rat Sertoli cells cultured in either serum-free or serum-containing media. Lactate accumulation by Sertoli cells in serum-free control cultures was 10 fold greater than the values obtained in control cultures exposed to serum. Under either culture condition, 3.1 μg/ml of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or cannabinol (CBN) stimulated lactate secretion above control levels. Cannabidiol (CBD) stimulated lactate secretion in serum-containing but not in serum-free media. Using serum-free culture conditions, we next studied the effects of combinations of THC and either epinephrine or FSH on lactate and transferrin secretion by immature rat Sertoli cells. Co-incubation of 0.1 μM epinephrine with 0.8 or 3.1 μg/ml THC significantly stimulated lactate secretion when compared to epinephrine or THC alone, while only the high THC dose increased transferrin secretion. Moreover, co-incubation of FSH (1 μg/ml) with THC (0.8 or 3.1 μg/ml), significantly stimulated both lactate and transferrin production by immature rat Sertoli cells. These results add to the growing evidence that cannabinoids can exert direct effects on Sertoli cell function and modulate their responses to physiological stimuli.

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Life sciences