Alright, so I know we’re still discovering amazing new things weed can do, but it looks like it could literally help with the ongoing global pandemic. I’ll be honest, I was trying to think of something to write about, so I started my research and immediately found a number of articles that appeared yesterday claiming compounds in cannabis could stop Covid-19 . Well, not completely stopping it altogether would be crazy, but studies have shown that it can have a significant effect on infection rates. While this is all new and still somewhat speculative, we can also take a look at what has been reported in recent studies.
What do we think is going on?
So basically, scientists at Oregon State University have published a study that indicates compounds in cannabis may have the potential to block the virus from entering healthy human cells. Isn’t that completely wild already?
The compounds in question are cannabigerolic acid (CBGA) and cannabidiolic acid (CBDA). These may not be compounds you know as well as the classics, but they seem to be mostly effective in stopping both alpha and beta variants of the virus. The study published in the Journal Of Nature Products talks about the fact that these compounds appear to be able to bind to the spike protein found on the virus. It’s basically the morsel it uses to get into a healthy cell and generally mess it up. Although we may not be as familiar with these cannabis compounds, they are still abundant and extremely common in most if not all forms of cannabis. So basically, if these compounds have the potential to stop the spread of Covid-19, even if only so far in Alpha and Beta variants, that could be huge news for… well everyone world.
What does that mean?
Basically like almost everything we don’t know yet at the start of scientific testing. This basically means that it is possible that scientists are creating some form of cannabis-derived medicine that could help us ward off Covid-19. This means that so far we know that these cannabis acids have an effect on the Alpha and beta variants of the virus. This is obviously great news and we should be delighted with it, but that doesn’t mean we can go straight to the assumption that weed can cure Covid. The acids that bind the virus’ spike protein aren’t the same boys that get us high. Many of you already know that cannabis is an extremely complex plant that contains all sorts of funny nonsense. There are cannabinoids like THC and cannabinoid acids like the guys we’re talking about here. After reading much of the study in the Natural Products Journal I can say with confidence that I didn’t understand the majority of it very well, since I’m studying English and acting, I’m not very knowledgeable when it comes to scientific jargon. However, if you are, I suggest you check it out to get a full idea of what’s going on in the study.
These acids are highly capable of blocking the spike protein as I mentioned earlier. Most vaccines and antibody therapies try to do just that. So any new way we find to achieve this goal is great news. This could potentially block infections, but could also shorten the duration and severity of the virus. This, in turn, means that while it doesn’t cure Covid, it has the potential to save many lives.
Will smoking weed block the infection?
The extremely short answer to this question is no, it won’t. There was no link between smoking weed and a reduction in Covid cases, that is not the subject of this study. Unfortunately, the masses have already taken to the internet to claim that the herb cures or can prevent you from catching this virus. I can’t be any clearer on this, it’s not true. We’re in no way suggesting that if you smoke weed you don’t have to worry about Covid or need to be so careful so make sure it’s not yours or someone else’s to take away from this news. The last thing we need is more stigma around weed or those who smoke it. This is exactly what will happen if people start claiming stoners are super spreaders. So yeah, it’s a real boon for science and cannabis-based medical testing, but be cool guys.
The main drawback of this study is that it has not yet been tested on humans. We all know that initial testing successes don’t mean humans will see the same benefit. At this point, all they know is that the acid has an effect on the virus in a test tube. However, it’s a good starting point and I hope they can move on to real-world testing. We know that these compounds can be ingested orally and hopefully at some point they can be used to create a form of treatment suitable for human consumption. Hopefully, if this succeeds, it will also lead to a more serious examination of what cannabis is capable of. Sure, we’ve been looking at the medicinal benefits of the herb for a long time, but it’s still woefully underfunded. Who knows, if we manage to use cannabis to help end this long-lasting global pandemic, perhaps more attention will be paid to what this plant can do if we look beyond its most basic uses. We can only hope that further research and testing will continue after the publication of this article.
Again, I can’t stress enough, no one has claimed weed can cure Covid. The acids that can help only exist in pre-carboxylation and so setting the weeds on fire would actually destroy them. Absolutely keep smoking, just wear your mask and stay safe.
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