Back when Covid was first declared a pandemic, many people jumped on it and touted CBD as a cure for infection. Several companies and CBD proponents talked about how it could prevent or stop the spread of the disease. The thing was, there was no scientific evidence to back that up, and experts quickly warned consumers not to believe the hype! There was no proof that CBD could cure Covid, or even help. Even we wrote about it.
Well, as it turns out, those people were onto something…
Can CBD prevent Covid? As we’ve learned over the past weeks, new research is showing huge potential for our beloved natural compound.
Can CBD Prevent Covid?
A study published by researchers at Oregon State University proves that some compounds from the hemp plant, notably CBDA and CBGA, have the ability to prevent the virus that causes COVID-19 from entering human cells.
The study, which was led by Richard van Breemen, was published this week in the Journal of Natural Products. Breeman is a researcher with Oregon State’s Global Hemp Innovation Center, College of Pharmacy and Linus Pauling Institute.
This new study notes:
“In follow-up virus neutralization assays, cannabigerolic acid and cannabidiolic acid prevented infection of human epithelial cells by a pseudovirus expressing the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and prevented entry of live SARS-CoV-2 into cells.”
Additionally… “Importantly, cannabigerolic acid and cannabidiolic acid were equally effective against the SARS-CoV-2 alpha variant B.1.1.7 and the beta variant B.1.351. Orally bioavailable and with a long history of safe human use, these cannabinoids, isolated or in hemp extracts, have the potential to prevent as well as treat infection by SARS-CoV-2.”
Now, it’s important to note that the study didn’t test CBD. Rather, it tested CBDA and CBGA.
So what are those exactly?
What are CBGA and CBDA?
As mentioned, these two cannabinoids are not the same as CBD.
CBGA – CBGA (cannabigerolic acid) is actually the precursor to CBD. It’s the raw form of cannabigerol (CBG)It’s one of the first cannabinoids to develop as hemp grows, and it is often called the Mother of all Cannabinoids.
As the plant grows, enzymes unique to each strain convert that cannabigerolic acid into one of 3 major cannabinoid compounds.
CBDA – Once the cannabigerolic acid has turned into cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), we get all those other amazing cannabinoids, including CBD.
Once the hemp plant is exposed to heat in a process called decarboxylation, CBDA, converts into its decarboxylated form, known as the main psychoactive cannabinoids (THC, CBC, CBD, etc). So, that bottle of CBD you have on the shelf probably contains very little (if any) of either CBGA or CBDA. Still, that doesn’t negate the fact that this is incredible news.
So, can CBD prevent Covid? The jury is still out on that one, but it’s clear that components of the hemp plant may play a crucial role in stemming the spread and severity of the virus. And that could have major implications for the CBD industry moving forward.