With nearly 6 million known cases of Coronavirus and over 360,000 know deaths worldwide, scientists are racing to find a cure and vaccine to prevent further spread. Like other viruses, COVID-19 starts out in the lungs, but then causes havoc with the immune system that can lead to long-term lung damage or death.
Because Covid-19 compromises the immune system, scientists are also examining the efficacy of CBD as a potential treatment option. Israeli & Canadian scientists are conducting studies to determine if CBD alongside existing treatment options are a possible solution. Prior studies of CBD have shown it to possess anti-inflammatory properties by interacting with specific receptors on cells in the brain and body: the CB1 receptor, found on neurons and glial cells in various parts of the brain, and the CB2 receptor, found mainly in the body’s immune system.
Earlier this month, InnoCan Pharma announced a collaboration with Tel Aviv University to instill CBD medicine through exosomes — or the small cell structures created when stem cells multiply. The unconventional method will utilize the exosomes as “homing missiles,” as they can uniquely target cell organs damaged by COVID-19. Researchers then believe CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties will repair the damaged cells through a synergistic effect.
A second Israeli clinical trial includes 10 Covid-19 patients currently undergoing treatment in Israel’s Rabin Medical Center. Doctors will combine traditional steroids and CBD, with the belief CBD will enhance the therapeutic potential of the steroids. The trial, conducted by Stero Biotechs in collaboration with Mor Research Application, already has plans to expand treatment to 40 additional patients should it prove successful.
A third study, launched by Tel Aviv’s Ichilov Medical Center, will investigate whether CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties could lower respiratory symptoms experienced in moderate COVID-19 patients.
Canadian researchers have also announced intentions to study what role CBD can play in slowing COVID-19. They also believe its anti-inflammatory properties could provide a crucial role in potential treatment.
Researchers at the University of Lethbridge recently released results from a study that shows the benefits of CBD as an aid in blocking the cells that enter the body from the novel coronavirus. The study, yet to be peer reviewed, was conducted in April and released in a preclinical study titled “In Search of Preventative Strategies: Novel Anti-Inflammatory High-CBD Cannabis Sativa Extracts Modulate ACE2 Expression in COVID-19 Gateway Tissues.”
Although there is no current medical proof that cannabis can prevent, treat or cure any coronavirus strain, there is emerging scientific evidence that CBD can help stimulate immune cells in the body, which may dampen inflammatory responses caused by infections.