Researchers Explain How Cannabis Can Help Reduce COVID-19 Effects

4 min read
Blood Sample of Corona Virus on Cannabis Leaves

Medicinal cannabis has taken over the world by a storm by providing relief to several patients suffering through painful ailments. So, it is only natural for researchers to turn to the cannabis plant to look for solutions that can be a possible cure for COVID-19.

The active compounds in cannabis have several properties that have the potential to treat infections from the coronavirus. Researchers everywhere are hopeful about the promising positive effects of the plant and have discussed if it could be used as an antiviral medication.



Researchers from the Texas Biomedical Research Institute and the University of Nebraska are recommending intensive research into how CBD might help treat fatal inflammation caused due to the virus. In a peer-reviewed article of this month’s issue of Brain, Behavior and Immunity, the authors discussed the evidence of cannabis’ anti-inflammatory powers.

The authors mentioned, “recent reports have suggested that acute infection is associated with a cytokine superstorm, which contributes to the symptoms of fever, cough, muscle pain.”

The extreme inflammation leads to severe pneumonia which clogs up the lungs, making it difficult for a person to breathe. As a preliminary step, it becomes vital for researchers and scientists to figure out how to reduce the inflammation.

Researches are looking for drugs that can reduce IL-6 cytokine activity. One such drug that could clear out the affected lungs, Tocilizumab, was found to help recover 90% of the patients that were treated. However, it caused severe adverse side effects like inflammation of the pancreas and hypertriglyceridemia.

Hence, the search for an alternative that doesn’t cause serious side effects continues.

Since previous research has shown that CBD can reduce lung inflammation and a number of pro-inflammatory cytokines, including IL-6, it seems like a viable option.

Studies have shown that CBD reduces interleukin (IL)-2, IL-1α and β, interferon-gamma, inducible protein-10, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, macrophage inflammatory protein-1α, and tumor necrosis factor-α – all of which are linked with severe cases of COVID-19.

Another factor that gives CBD an upper edge is that it increases the production of interferons, a signaling protein that prevents viruses from replicating and activates immune cells.

Based on an animal study on asthma, researchers have been convinced that CBD can reduce the production of pro-inflammatory cytokine production that can reduce airway inflammation. It also reduced pulmonary fibrosis, which is one of the serious implications caused by coronavirus.

Along with the benefit of having very minimal side effects, CBD might have a side benefit for patients who are infected with the virus – reduced anxiety.

The article’s authors pointed out that the disease and the situation of COVID-19 have led to many uncertainties, such as the economy, employment and loss of connection which fuels depression, fear and anxiety. The side benefit of CBD can become crucial in considering and conducting further research on CBD as a route to cure patients since it may also help manage stress.

The authors mention the powerful anti-inflammatory properties of THC as well, but it carries with it symptoms like anxiety, increased heart rate, and disorientation.

On the other hand, research on CBD shows that it can be tolerated with the high dosage – up to 1500 mg a day for about two weeks. The authors say that this “suggests its feasibility to reduce SARS-CoV2 induced lung inflammation/ pathology and disease severity.”

No studies conducted show that cannabis or its compounds like CBD can treat coronavirus-affected patients specifically but the authors of this article believe that the evidence warrants further investigation and a closer look at the possibility of its potential.

Whether the evidence of reduced inflammation brings a potential cure for COVID-19 to the table or not, it does fill one with hope.

No studies conducted show that cannabis or its compounds like CBD can treat coronavirus-affected patients specifically but the authors of this article believe that the evidence warrants further investigation and a closer look at the possibility of its potential.

Whether the evidence of reduced inflammation brings a potential cure for COVID-19 to the table or not, it does fill one with hope.



LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here