Highly Specific, Fluorescent Cannabinoid Type 2 Receptor Probes Enable Applications in Microscopy, Flow Cytometry and FRET-based Binding Assays

Pharmacological modulation of cannabinoid type 2 receptor (CB2R) holds promise for the treatment of numerous conditions including inflammatory diseases, autoimmune disorders, pain, and cancer. Despite its significance, researchers lack reliable tools to address questions concerning the complex mechanism of CB2R signaling and its downstream consequences, especially in cell-type and tissue-dependent contexts. Herein, we report highly specific CB2R fluorescent probes and their use in a variety of applications: flow cytometry with overexpressing as well as endogenously expressing cells, real-time confocal microscopy of living cells, and a novel FRET-based, CB2R binding assay amenable to high throughput screening.