Date of Award

Spring 5-2012

Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Trudell, Mark L.

Second Advisor

Jursic, Branko

Third Advisor

Wang, Guijun


Cannabis and its derivatives have been used for both medicinal and recreational purposes. The study of this plant led to the discovery of over 60 cannabinoids, found exclusively in cannabis, that contribute to the behavioral effects of cannabis use, the most common is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol. Cannabinoid receptors function to increase activity in the mesolimbic dopamine reward system. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that plays a major role in addition and its regulation plays a crucial role in mental and physical well-being. There is evidence that CB1 receptors are important to the reinforcing effects and the development of physical dependence on opiate drugs. Studies have shown that increased levels of dopamine are consistent with addiction while reduced levels lead to a decline in recreational use.

The goal of this research is to design, synthesize and develop potential CB1 receptors that exhibit a neutral cannabinoid antagonist pharmacological profile.


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