A to study published last week in Natural Products Magazine provoked a wave of headlines proclaiming that cannabis can prevent or cure COVID, like this breathless Yahoo! Finance: “How it is linked to cannabis COVID Prevention, how can you invest in the unexpected benefit? ” CBD asked scientist Matt Elmes, PhD and postdoctoral fellow work focused on the biochemistry of cannabinoids, to assess the importance of this new research, which did not involve human or animal subjects in the laboratory.
Project CBD: What do you think of the new study by researchers at Oregon State University and the University of Oregon University of Health and Science, which showed that cannabidiolic acid (CBDA, the botanical forerunner of CBD), and other acidic cannabis compounds (CBGA i THCA) can prevent coronavirus from infecting human cells?
The most: I’ve seen a lot of excitement in the media and on social media about this news CBDA publication. I think it really needs to be mitigated. The data in this article come exclusively from specimens and Petri dishes from cultured cells. We must always be careful not to draw clinical conclusions from preclinical experiments like this because there will almost always be important warnings when trying to translate them into a real-world environment.
Project CBD: Aside from the limitations of in vitro research, what is the substance of these findings?
The most: To be honest, the data doesn’t even seem particularly exciting to me. They show that acid cannabinoids can bind to the viral spike protein with micromolar affinities. These are extremely high concentrations to achieve in a human! It is a challenge to surpass the nanomolar range in most tissues, which makes me even more doubtful that this has real clinical applications. However, there is still an interesting “test tube” finding that requires further study to see if cannabinoids may be useful for COVID beyond its immunomodulatory effects.
Project CBD: Explain what you mean when you say that high concentrations of acid cannabinoids are difficult to achieve in humans.
The most: The main finding of this research publication is that CBDA can bind to (have affinity with) the COVID Protein protein, along with some proof-of-concept experiments that show that having this cannabinoid attached to the virus particles can hinder its ability to infect new cells. The weaker the strength of what scientists call “ligand-receptor interaction,” the more of this ligand you will need to have an effect. In this case, CBDA is the ligand and the COVID the ear protein is the receptor. This is why scientists quantify and describe the strength of ligand-receptor interactions in terms of concentration. We are describing the concentration of ligands needed to achieve a significant amount of interaction with the receptor.
Project CBD: What are “micromolar affinities”?
“Micromolar” (or “molarity”) is simply an expression of concentration that represents the number of molecules of a given compound per liter. The group behind this research found it experimentally CBDA it needed to be present at micromolar concentrations in order to make an appreciable amount of attachment to the viral ear protein. When we consume cannabis, cannabinoids spread through the blood and fatty tissues of our body. Similarly, we describe the concentration of cannabinoids that ends up in a tissue in terms of molarity. The data in this new paper show that we should gather enough molecules CBDA by volume of tissue falling in the “micromolar concentration range” before we should expect it to have an effect. Most human tissues will not reach above the nanomolar concentration range (which is 1000 times smaller than a micromolar), even when large doses of cannabinoids are taken regularly! Therefore, I think it is likely that the interaction that this group found between acid and cannabinoids COVID it will prove to be too weak to show much, if any, clinical relevance.