Study Finds Cannabis Compounds Prevent Infection By COVID-19 Virus

Marijuana leaves in glass jar on table against black background

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BOSTON, Mass. (WBZNewsRadio) - A new study shows compounds in cannabis can prevent infection from the virus that causes Covid-19 by blocking it's entry into cells. The laboratory study was published this week by researchers affiliated with Oregon State University.

Researchers found that two cannabinoid acids commonly found in hemp varietals of cannabis, cannabigerolic acid, or CBGA, and cannabidiolic acid, also known as CBDA, can bind to the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19. By doing this, the compounds can prevent the virus from entering the cells and causing any infection.

"These compounds can be taken orally and have a long history of safe use in humans," said Richard Van Breemen, a professor at Oregon State. "They have the potential to prevent as well as treat infection by SARS-CoV-2."

"They are not controlled substances like THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, and have a good safety profile in humans," he added.

It's important to note that the cannabis extract alone is not enough to prevent an unvaccinated person from contracting the virus and any treatment should be combined with proper doses of the COVID vaccine.

Further research is needed, but the results of the study shows the cannanbinoids could be developed into drugs to treat or prevent Covid-19.

WBZ's Jim MacKay (@JimMacKayOnAir) reports

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