Although cannabis research is still in its infancy, scientists are continually identifying additional therapeutic benefits of this remarkable medicine. Of all the 100+ cannabinoids found in cannabis, CBD or cannabidiol is clearly the most medicinal.
Now that we’re in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s exciting to learn that Canadian scientists at the University of Lethbridge have some promising results that might be counted as preliminary evidence that cannabis may block COVID-19 infection.
The aim of their study was to find ways to hinder the corona virus from finding a host in the lungs, intestines, and oral cavity. The researchers studied over 400 cannabis strains, and found about a dozen they say have the greatest potential to help prevent the virus. Each of these were high in CBD.
By using artificial human 3-D tissue models, they simulated and mapped out how each strain may impact COVID-19 infections in the human oral, airway, and intestinal tissues. Particularly, they monitored each strain’s ability to modulate ACE2 levels, an enzyme previously linked to COVID-19 infection.
The lead researcher, biological scientist Dr. Igor Kovalchuk stated some strains showed promising results in ensuring less fertile ground for the virus to take root. According to Kovalchuk, “A number of them have reduced the number of these (virus) receptors by 73 percent, the chance of it getting in is much lower. If they can reduce the number of receptors, there’s much less chance of getting infected.”
Moreover, the researchers were able to identify 13 CBD extracts that are able to change ACE2 levels. The data suggested that some strains were also able to down-regulate serine protease TMPRSS2, which is another protein critical for corona virus to enter host cells and spread throughout the body.
While the findings are promising they are yet to be peer-reviewed. The results cannot be taken as conclusive evidence of cannabis’s ability to treat the virus since the researchers haven’t been able to identify what the ideal ratio is of THC to CBD, or even if the active ingredient is CBD or some other component or combination.
If peer-reviewed and more research is done on the subject, the study could be actually practiced in the form of mouth wash, gargle, inhalants, or gel caps, according to Kovalchuk.
Rather than waiting for the peer-review, you have nothing to lose by acting now on these preliminary findings. Knowing how safe CBD is, I would recommend using CBD preventively during this time of high prevalence of the corona virus. I take it daily for this purpose, 10mg capsules 2 or 3x/day. I use a high-quality CBD product, Trill Pills, which can be purchased online @ www.trillpills.com.