Article by Anthony Leonardi, Washington Examiner
New research shows a strain of cannabis may have a therapeutic effect on coronavirus patients.
Scientists at the University of Lethbridge in Canada have gathered preliminary data that show strong strains of medical marijuana can affect ACE2 pathways, a key receptor that the coronavirus hijacks to infect humans with COVID-19.
“We were totally stunned at first, and then we were really happy,” said Olga Kovalchuk, one of the researchers, to CTV News. “The virus has the capacity to bind to it and pull it into the cell, almost like a doorway,” she added.
The findings of the research, published in the online journal Preprints, show high extracts of CBD can also reduce inflammation in a way that slows the coronavirus in the body.
“Imagine a cell being a large building,” said another researcher, Igor Kovalchuk. “Cannabinoids decrease the number of doors in the building by, say, 70%, so it means the level of entry will be restricted. So, therefore, you have more chance to fight it.”
The scientists stressed that the strain of CBD they used could not be obtained in any local marijuana dispensary and that clinical trials are imperative for it to be an at-home treatment. They have not tested the effects of smoking cannabis.