Cannabis Cannabinoid Res. 2022 Apr 13. doi: 10.1089/can.2022.0014. Online ahead of print.
Obesity and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) constitute global and growing epidemics that result in therapeutic dead ends. There is an urgent need for new and accessible treatments to improve and widen both preventive and curative approaches against NAFLD. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is recognized as a complex signaling apparatus closely related to metabolic disorders and is a key target for treating NAFLD. Despite a lack of conclusive clinical trials, observational and pre-clinical studies highlight putative benefits of phytocannabinoids on liver steatosis through multiple pathways. Owing to both its safety profile and its diversity of active compounds acting primarily (although not exclusively) on the ECS-and its expanded version, the endocannabinoidome, the Cannabis plant should be considered a major prospect in the treatment of NAFLD. However, seizing this opportunity, and intensifying clinical research in this direction, will require overcoming both scientific and nonscientific barriers.