Pharmacologic Effects of Cannabidiol on Acute Reperfused Myocardial Infarction in Rabbits: Evaluated With 3.0T Cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Histopathology

Cannabidiol (CBD) has anti-inflammatory effects. We explored its therapeutic effects on cardiac ischemia–reperfusion injury with an experimental imaging platform. Reperfused acute myocardial infarction (AMI) was induced in rabbits with a 90-minute coronary artery occlusion followed by 24-hour reperfusion. Before reperfusion, rabbits received 2 intravenous doses of 100 μg/kg CBD (n = 10) or vehicle (control, n = 10). Evans blue was intravenously injected for later detection of the AMI core. Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging was performed to evaluate cardiac morphology and function. After euthanasia, blood troponin I (cTnI) was assessed, and the heart was excised and infused with multifunctional red iodized oil dye. The heart was sliced for digital radiography to quantify the perfusion density rate, area at risk (AAR), and myocardial salvage index, followed by histomorphologic staining. Compared with controls, CBD treatment improved systolic wall thickening (P < 0.05), significantly increased blood flow in the AAR (P < 0.05), significantly decreased microvascular obstruction (P < 0.05), increased the perfusion density rate by 1.7-fold, lowered the AMI core/AAR ratio (P < 0.05), and increased the myocardial salvage index (P < 0.05). These improvements were associated with reductions in serum cTnI, cardiac leukocyte infiltration, and myocellular apoptosis (P < 0.05). Thus, CBD therapy reduced AMI size and facilitated restoration of left ventricular function. We demonstrated that this experimental platform has potential theragnostic utility.

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