Since 2020, the COVID-19 virus has been a major concern across the globe. Medical practitioners and researchers have been working tirelessly to find the best treatment and prevention methods and the latest on their list? Cannabinoids.
Breakthrough research just released indicates that cannabinoid compounds have the ability to prevent the virus from infecting the respiratory system. Though it is still the early stages of research, this initial study yielded exciting results.
A recent study has found that certain cannabinoids have properties that prevent respiratory infections caused by the COVID-19 virus. The cannabinoids blocked live severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2, or SARS-CoV-2, from entering the kind of cells that line the human body.
The effectiveness extends to variants of the virus too. Lead researcher on the study, Richard van Breemen claims, “our research showed the hemp compounds were equally effective against variants of SARS-CoV-2, including variant B.1.1.7.”
It’s believed that the two cannabinoids can be used with the COVID-19 vaccine for extra effectiveness.
The Cannabinoid Acids
Researchers found two specific cannabinoids effectively block SARS-CoV-2 from entering human cells: CBDA and CBGA.
Cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) is a particular strain of cannabis. It’s found unprocessed in the raw cannabis plant, but it isn’t a cannabinoid that’s easy to find on the market. CBDA is typically processed to become CBD.
Like CBD, CBDA contains no more than 0.3% THC (the federal legal limit). It won’t get you high, but it has several medicinal benefits still being researched.
In addition to preventing infection of SARS-CoV-2, CBDA has been studied for its potential to alleviate nausea, inhibit cancer progression, and act as an antipsychotic.
Cannabigerolic Acid (CBGA) is an essential cannabinoid; it’s the cannabinoid from which CBC, CBD, and THC are derived. CBGA has less than 0.3% THC, so it has no psychoactive effects.
CBGA, similar to CBDA, has a few presumed medicinal benefits besides the ability to block SARS-CoV-2. Research has shown cardiovascular disease along with colon cancer cells respond to CBGA treatment.
If you’re planning to shop for CBGA products, you might have a hard time. It’s not often found on its own but rather mixed with many other cannabinoids in CBD products.
So, does this mean smoking weed will prevent COVID-19 from making you sick? Definitely not. The necessary compounds aren’t often found raw in the cannabis you smoke.
However, this is exciting research and a possible new path for combatting the coronavirus. Potentially this discovery will help reduce the negative stigmas surrounding the cannabis plant.