A new study published by Oregon State University researchers found that cannabis compounds have the ability to block the virus that causes COVID-19 from entering human cells, KPRC sister station WDIV reported.
WDIV shared the findings of the study, led by Richard van Breemen, a researcher at Oregon State’s Global Hemp Innovation Center, the College of Pharmacy and the Linus Pauling Institute, published this week in the Journal of Natural Products.
Van Breemann explains hemp – known scientifically as Cannabis sativa – as a source of fiber, food and animal feed, and many hemp extracts and in cosmetics, body lotions, dietary supplements and food. Compounds are added.
According to a news release from OSU and reported by WDIV, van Breemen and colleagues, including scientists at Oregon Health and Science University, found that a pair of cannabinoid acids bind to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, an important blocks the step. The process the virus uses to infect people.
The compounds are cannabigerolic acid, or CBGA, and cannabidiolic acid, CBDA, and the spike protein are the same drug targets used in COVID-19 vaccines and antibody therapy. A drug target is a molecule important for any post-disease process, meaning that its disruption can thwart infection or disease progression.
“These cannabinoid acids are abundant in cannabis and many cannabis extracts,” Van Breemann said. “They are not a controlled substance like THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, and have a good safety profile in humans. And our research showed that the cannabis compounds were equally effective against variants of SARS-CoV-2, including Variant B.1.1.7, which was first detected in the United Kingdom, and variant B.1.351, which was first detected in South Africa.
Those two variants are also called alpha and beta versions respectively.
For more information about this study, check out WDIV’s full report here.
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