Coronavirus: Strong strains of cannabis 'could prevent and treat virus'

Joanna Estrada
May 23, 2020

A new study conducted by a team of Canadian scientists indicates that certain strains of cannabis have a positive effect in fighting off the coronavirus (COVID-19).

The study was published on Preprints, an online platform dedicated to making academic research papers available for free. According to the research, the beloved plant "can help curtail disease spread and reduce mortality" of the novel Coronavirus.

Why? Because those strains can down-regulate the protein receptor ACE2, which the coronavirus targets in the mouth, nose, lungs, kidneys, testes and gastrointestinal tract. The study proclaims various strains were able to reduce virus receptor activity by as much as 73 percent. Scientists from the University of Lethbridge claim to have found strong strains of cannabis that could help prevent and then treat COVID-19.

"Given the current dire and rapidly evolving epidemiological situation, every possible therapeutic opportunity and avenue must be considered", the report read.

If successful, the study suggested that the strains could be developed into "easy-to-use preventative treatments" like mouthwash, throat gargle, inhalants or gel caps which could decrease the potential of viral infection through the mouth.

But before you hit that celebratory blunt, it's important to note that the study is yet to be peer-reviewed and the process has not been tested on humans.

The study was conducted on human tissue models from Mattek Life Sciences called EpiAirway, EpiOral and EpiIntestinal tissues; so there's now no determination on whether cannabis for COVID prevention would work on living humans.

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