BackgroundThe endocannabinoid system is involved in the regulation of periodontal tissue homeostasis. Synthetic cannabinoid methanandamide (Meth-AEA) has improved stability and affinity to cannabinoid receptors compared to its endogenous analog anandamide. In the present study, we investigated the effect of methanandamide on the production of pro-inflammatory mediators in primary human periodontal ligament cells (hPdLCs).MethodshPdLCs were treated with Meth-AEA for 24h, and the resulting production of interleukin (IL)-6, IL-8, and monocyte chemotactic protein (MCP)-1 was measured in the absence or the presence of Porphyromonas gingivalis lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Additionally, the effect of Meth-AEA on the proliferation/viability of hPdLCs was measured by the MTT method.ResultsMethanandamide at a concentration of 10 mu M significantly inhibited P. gingivalis LPS induced production of IL-6, IL-8, and MCP-1. Basal production of IL-6 and IL-8 was slightly enhanced by 10 mu M Meth-AEA. No effect of Meth-AEA on the basal production of MCP-1 was observed. Meth-AEA in concentrations up to 10 mu M did not affect the proliferation/viability of hPdLCs, but significantly inhibited it at a concentration of 30 mu M.ConclusionOur study suggests that the inflammatory response in periodontal ligament cells could be influenced by the activation of the cannabinoid system, which might be potentially involved in the progression of periodontal disease.