As bugs get more resistant to the existing antibiotics, researchers are looking for new ways to combat infections and cannabidiol, a marijuana compound, is showing promise as a remedy for superbugs.
A new study conducted by researchers in Brisbane, Australia has shown that CBD has promising antimicrobial activity against some strains of Gram-positive bacteria, such as varieties of strep and staph bacteria.
In the study, a synthetic form of CBD was placed in lab dishes containing the bugs being investigated. The cannabis compound showed the same level of antimicrobial activity as two existing prescription antibiotics (daptomycin and vancomycin). The synthetic CBD even went as far as killing some strains of strep and staph bacteria that no longer responded to the two prescription antibiotics.
Additionally, the synthetic compound also acted against bacterial biofilms. These biofilms are formed when proteins are secreted by bacteria on surfaces. Such surfaces can become slippery, and the resulted infections are very difficult to treat. The in vitro tests showed that CBD can combat such biofilms.
The researchers have cautioned that people should not start treating themselves against infections using CBD since this research was an in vitro (in test tubes) study and the findings aren’t a guarantee that similar results will be observed in humans.
Mark Blaskovich, the lead author of the study, said that people are better off sticking to the current treatment options against infections until such a time when their preliminary research findings are pursued further and confirm that CBD works effectively to fight infections in humans.
The study was conducted as a collaboration between Botanix Pharmaceuticals (a drug discovery company) and the Center for Superbug Solutions at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.
While the research is yet to be published in a peer-reviewed journal, it was presented on June 23 to the American Society for Microbiology during its annual meeting in San Francisco.
It is still early days before CBD is developed into a drug for infections. As already mentioned, further research is needed to establish at what dosage CBD can combat infections in humans, how best to administer the compound for maximum effect, and what side effects, if any, may result from the use of CBD as an antibiotic at the therapeutic dosage established.
The authors of this study are now set on conducting animal studies on the antibacterial activity of CBD while Botanix Pharmaceuticals has set its sights on studying whether CBD can be used to kill staph bacteria on the skin of people before they undergo surgery. This step is essential in preventing post-surgical infections.
Industry watchers expect the entire cannabis industry, including players like Green Growth Brands Inc. (CSE: GGB) (OTCQB: GGBXF) and Golden Developing Solutions Inc. (OTC: DVLP), to feel vindicated by the proof emerging about the health benefits of different marijuana compounds.
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