It has been shown that activating the innate cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2) reduces brain swelling and neurological impairment. The endogenous cannabinoid 2-AG is released in the brains of mice following brain injury, though not enough to protect the damaged brain. The fact that 2-AG is released naturally following a brain injury made the team question whether more would be better.
A single dose of plant-derived 2-AG was administered to brain damaged mice. The mice who received treatment improved in cognitive function, motor function and every parameter examined, even months later. The study was a fantastic success. Of course, in a lab setting the scientists had the advantage of being able to administer the dose of 2-AG shortly after brain injury, a key element in the success that could be harder to implement in a real life setting.