What is anandamide and its relationship to cannabis?

"Anandamide is an endocannabinoid that effects both CB1 and CB2 receptors in the endocannabinoid system. Endocannabinoids like anandamide are produced naturally within the body, and play an important role in regulating immune responses and cognitive function. The structure of anandamide was first described in 1992 by a research team working at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.[1]

The name anandamide comes from the Sanskrit word for bliss, as anandamide plays an important role in the brain's reward center. CB1 and CB2 receptors have a very similar response to both anandamide and THC. Both molecules can be absorbed by both CB1 and CB2 receptors, found all over the body including the brain, the central nervous system, and the peripheral nervous system."[2]

[1] - http://www.sciencemag.org/content/258/5090/1946

[2] - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15841111