Could cannabinoids be used to assist deal with COVID-19?

Many of the signs of the illness brought on by SARS-CoV-2 virus consequence from extreme irritation following the discharge of cytokines, together with acute respiratory misery syndrome (ARDS), a extreme lung damage that results in vital morbidity and mortality, particularly in older individuals, and the commonest reason for dying amongst COVID-19 sufferers.

Researchers’ curiosity has been piqued as a result of THC is understood to bind CB2 receptors, that are discovered totally on cells of the immune system. Activation of CB2 receptors by THC suppresses cytokine launch.

Now, analysis revealed in Frontiers in Pharmacology reveals THC can defend mice from the consequences of bacterial-induced ARDS.

ARDS could be introduced on by environmental insults to the lungs, pneumonia, bacterial infections, and trauma. It’s usually accompanied by the over-activation of T cells, inflicting extreme manufacturing of inflammatory cytokines, and could be triggered by the bacterium, Staphylococcus aureus, and publicity to its enterotoxin, enterotoxin B (SEB). An immune response to this antigen results in the overproduction of cytokines, often called a cytokine storm.

The scientists, on the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, discovered that remedy with THC protected mice that had been beforehand uncovered to SEB. All the mice uncovered to SEB died inside 4–5 days, whereas these mice that have been uncovered to SEB, and then handled with THC, survived.

Analysis of mRNA confirmed THC remedy was accompanied by lowered expression of inflammatory cytokines and elevated expression of anti-inflammatory cytokines. The authors additionally discovered that THC exerted its results by way of its capability to bind and activate the CB2 receptor.

While it’s all the time essential to be cautious about extrapolating outcomes from animal fashions, this analysis suggests THC may very well be explored as a possible therapeutic agent within the remedy of ARDS in people, and could present some safety from ARDS brought on by COVID-19. Further analysis will reveal if cannabinoids, like THC, can be utilized to deal with the signs of COVID-19.

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