Cannabinoids protect against COVID; market predictions after new research revealed

The new year broke with research news that CBGA/CBDA cannabinoids protect against COVID

There is no more important health news since the beginning of the COVID pandemic than new research out of Oregon State University, led by Richard van Breemen, PhD, concluding that specific compounds cannabinoids protect against COVID.

In January a report on the research, “Cannabinoids Block Cellular Entry of SARS-CoV-2 and the Emerging Variants,” was published online by the Journal of Natural Products.[1] Van Breemen’s study concluded that specific cannabinoid compounds found in hemp — CBGA (cannabigerolic acid) and CBGA (cannabidiolic acid) — bind to the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2, which effectively prevents the spike protein from binding with angiotensin-converting enzyme-2 (ACE-2) receptors. The spike protein works by “hooking” onto the ACE 2 receptor’s organs linings, including lung linings, which is how the virus infects people. With CBGA/CBDA binding to the virus spike, the virus cannot enter the cell by binding as it can never “hook” to the cell.

Hemp compounds and other COVID variants

Just as importantly, the research indicated the hemp compounds were equally effective against variants of SARS-CoV-2, including variant B.1.1.7, which was first detected in the United Kingdom, and variant B.1.351, first seen in South Africa.

“These variants are well known for evading antibodies against early lineage SARS-CoV-2, which is obviously concerning given that current vaccination strategies rely on the early lineage spike protein as an antigen,” Van Breemen said. “Our data show CBDA and CBGA are effective against the two variants we looked at, and we hope that trend will extend to other existing and future variants.

“That means cell entry inhibitors, like the acids from hemp, could be used to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection and also to shorten infections by preventing virus particles from infecting human cells.”

CBGA and CBDA are two of 115+ cannabinoid compounds found in the hemp plant. They are not as well-known as CBD, or its even more famous cousin, THC. The “A” in CBGA and CBDA stands for acid. CBDA and CBGA are precursors to CBG and CBD. In fact, CBGA is the precursor to all cannabinoids in the hemp plant and is sometimes referred to as the “Mother of all Cannabinoids.”[2]

Chiropractors and preventing COVID in patients

The excellent news for chiropractors is that CBGA/CBDA are not controlled substances like THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. The report mentioned that both CBDA/CBGA have a good safety profile in humans, and as cannabinoids protect against COVID,  they have the potential to prevent and treat infection by SARS-CoV-2.

This news offers hope to people across the globe who have had their lives dramatically changed by the COVID virus. This is also great news for chiropractors and other health providers who have long worked to bring healthy, natural products to their patients.

I have had many conversations with hemp farmers, extractors and fellow producers of cannabinoid products about the implications of this study as it specifically calls out industrial hemp, or Cannabis sativa L., Cannabaceae. The industrial hemp plant was legalized for production under the 2018 U.S. Farm Bill, with an important stipulation that it must contain less than 0.3% Delta 9 THC by weight. THC is the compound in cannabis associated with getting people “high” or producing psychoactive effects. By keeping the >0.3% ruling, most products from CBD companies will not produce psychoactive effects. The >0.3% ruling also is used to protect individual states’ legalization of marijuana, of which many have become reliant on the tax income from the legalization.

The predictions are for significant changes to the current CBD/cannabinoid industry with great news:

There will be a race to produce potent CBGA/CBDA compounds — We’ve been unable to find a specific CBGA/CBDA product in the market after a detailed review of the major CBD companies conducted in January of this year. When available, if you consider incorporating CBGA/CBDA into your practice, the most important consideration is ensuring that the company you are buying from is reputable and provides third-party testing with all its products.

Minor cannabinoids will gain more traction — CBD, THC, and now CBGA and CBDA are the most known cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. Still, there is a lot of research on other cannabinoids, which will completely revolutionize the traditional CBD market. CBC and CBG are two cannabinoids getting a lot of research dollars, and we expect more positive news about the health benefits of these and other cannabinoids after the revealing research that cannabinoids protect against COVID.

The FDA and FTC will come down on companies and providers making health claims — The researchers and companies paying for the research expect to make their money back. They are most likely filing patents protecting their right to make the medical claims they researched. Please be careful not to make any medical claim or buy products from companies that claim any cannabinoid can prevent or cure any disease. The FTC and FDA have imposed fines of over $100,000 against companies making claims that CBD products can cure or prevent diseases — and the penalties have been exceptionally high against companies that try to target “vulnerable targets,” such as the chronically ill, elderly and those with life-threatening diseases.

Promising future research as cannabinoids protect against COVID

The study from Oregon State University is incredibly promising, with the research results covered in Forbes, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), Fox News and many other news outlets. In the case of Forbes and the WSJ, the article referring to the study was the No. 1 most-popular story on those platforms.

We believe this research is the tip of the iceberg. Undoubtedly, future research will continue to show cannabinoid compounds can help resolve many of the issues facing this country’s health care system. This nation has been facing a health crisis for the last couple of decades. With the leadership of the chiropractic community, and the U.S. government in regard to leadership, we might see the light at the end of the tunnel.

JOE KRYSZAK, MBA, is president of Stirling Professional CBD, the brand built by and for chiropractors and professional offices, giving back to the chiropractic Industry. Since 2014, Stirling has grown, extracted and produced the purest CBD available. Stirling Professional brings amazing CBD+ products to your patients with the industry-leading lineup of 2,500-mg CBD lotions, THC and THC-free capsules and gels, and four great solutions for better sleep. We bring affordable solutions to your patients. For more information, go to stirlingprofessional.com.

REFERENCES

Cannabinoids Block Cellular Entry of SARS-CoV-2 and the Emerging Variants; Richard B. van Breemen, Ruth N. Muchiri, Timothy A. Bates, Jules B. Weinstein, Hans C. Leier, Scotland Farley, and Fikadu G. Tafesse; Journal of Natural Products Article ASAP; DOI: 10.1021/acs.jnatprod.1c00946

https://www.sydney.edu.au/news-opinion/news/2021/10/05/mother-of-all-cannabinoids-anti-seizure-compounds-cannabis.html

Cannabinoids Block Cellular Entry of SARS-CoV-2 and the Emerging Variants, Richard B. van Breemen, Ruth N. Muchiri, Timothy A. Bates, Jules B. Weinstein, Hans C. Leier, Scotland Farley, and Fikadu G. Tafesse, Journal of Natural Products Article ASAP, DOI: 10.1021/acs.jnatprod.1c00946

https://www.sydney.edu.au/news-opinion/news/2021/10/05/mother-of-all-cannabinoids-anti-seizure-compounds-cannabis.html



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