Cannabis for Covid-19

The emergence of Covid-19 has seen an alarming spread of this highly contagious virus. 

Seemingly, it has raised questions relating to whether it is based on information or raised a number of questions misinformation about its origins, any potential therapies, whether its natural or man made, the armchair anarchists have had a field day and have been scare mongering all over social media. One theory after another with many contradicting theories and opinions.

There still seems to be very little known about this virus, we can only hope the future will unveil the full story.

There are also important lessons to be learned from HIV and AIDS that appear to be useful for the COVID-19 pandemic. They are both zoonotic diseases with different modes of transmission, with no vaccine or cure yet; however, there is an effective antiretroviral therapy for AIDS.

Furthermore, it would appear that cannabis and cannabinoids have been proposed and used in some way towards the treatment of diseases that cause weight loss. The processes of inflammation are important in both the pathogenesis of AIDS and COVID-19. Cannabinoids are effective at suppressing immune and inflammatory functions and their potential as an anti-inflammatory treatment in COVID-19 has been suggested.

As the infection with SARS-CoV-2 causes inflammation due to immune response and a ‘cytokine storm’, resulting in a range of mild to no symptoms all the way to severe and critical COVID-19 induced comorbidity.

There is the wonder of the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) as a potentially targeted in the fight against COVID-19.

The effects from cannabis and cannabinoids are mediated throughout mammals via this Endocannabinoid System, to learn more about ECS check out our write up here.

Apparently, there are many studies that have arrived at the conclusion that cannabis-derived medications have anti-inflammatory and immunoregulatory properties through the activation of the cannabinoid receptors within ECS. 

The current growth worldwide in the acceptance of cannabis, and cannabinoid medicine is finally beginning to be linked to the cannabinoid receptors found in the Endocannabinoid System. It has even been proposed that the cannabinoid receptors connected to ECS could act as therapeutic targets in the COVID-19 pandemic. So, considering the information above, shouldn’t logical reasoning dictate that there should be more research into the potential positive effects that cannabinoids could have on diseases like SARS, HIV, and COVID-19.

This inhibition or blockade of cytokines reduces the need for mechanical ventilation, and also the mortality of patients with severe to critical COVID-19. Given that the cytokine storm 2 plays an important role in the pathogenesis of COVID-19, and the lack of specific treatments, the potential for cannabis and cannabinoids known to regulate inflammatory cytokine production and suppress an overactive immune response has been highlighted. Furthermore, ECS signaling on immune system, viral replication and pathogenesis involve several pathways that mediate the release of cytokines/chemokines through NF-kB, MAPK and JAK-STAT or through MNP transcription pathways. Therefore, the essential role that the ECS plays in immunity, and the modulation of inflammatory cytokine storm following activation of cannabinoid receptors by Endocannabinoids and phytocannabinoids suggests ECS components are targets for the COVID-19 and AIDS syndemics, as well as in other immune-related disorders. Specifically, while the CB2 cannabinoid receptor subtype is abundantly localised in immune cells, they are also present in low levels in neurons, and are emerging as a target in limiting excessive inflammation and cytokine storms.

The neurological manifestations of COVID-19 and AIDS share some molecular pathways. Phytocannabinoids, such as Δ9-THC and cannabidiol have been demonstrated to reduce inflammatory cytokine storms. What’s more, the approval by the US FDA for medical use of cannabidiol and Δ9-THC supports the hypothesis that cannabinoids could reduce the damage caused by COVID-19 by dousing the inflammatory cytokine storm provoked by SARS-CoV-2. Thus, the immune-regulatory properties of cannabis and cannabinoid formulations suggest their use in the treatment of immune-related disorders.

This article was based on information and quotes we found in an article which we then added some personal opinions to, click here to read that article in full.

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