Ok so this story should come as little surprise to many of you regular weed smokers out there. A recent study by the Monell Center and Kyushu University in Japan report that endocannabinoids act directly on taste receptors on the tongue to enhance sweet taste. That means that after you smoke, that twinky you eat is going to be extra good, but you didn’t need an official study to tell you that right?
In the study, published online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers conducted a series of experiments in mice to determine the behavioral, neural and cellular responses to sweet taste stimuli before and after the administration of endocannabinoids.
Sweet taste responses were enhanced by endocannabinoids in every case. The effect was specific for sweet taste, as endocannibinoids had no effect on responses to sour, salty, bitter or umami taste stimuli.
The effects were abolished when the experiments were repeated using knockout mice lacking the CB1 cannabinoid receptor. Additional studies revealed that the CB1 receptor and the T1R3 sweet taste receptor are present in the same taste cells.
Together, the experiments demonstrate that endocannabinoids selectively enhance sweet taste by acting on tongue taste cells and that the effect is mediated by the endocannabinoid receptor.
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