Antiviral activities of hemp cannabinoids

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“Hemp is an understudied source of pharmacologically active compounds and many unique plant secondary metabolites including more than 100 cannabinoids.

After years of legal restriction, research on hemp has recently demonstrated antiviral activities in silico, in vitro, and in vivo for cannabidiol (CBD), Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC), cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), cannabigerolic acid (CBGA), and several other cannabinoids against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and γ-herpes viruses.

Mechanisms of action include inhibition of viral cell entry, inhibition of viral proteases, and stimulation of cellular innate immune responses. The anti-inflammatory properties of cannabinoids are also under investigation for mitigating the cytokine storm of COVID-19 and controlling chronic inflammation in people living with HIV.

Retrospective clinical studies support antiviral activities of CBD, Δ9-THC, and cannabinoid mixtures as do some prospective clinical trials, but appropriately designed clinical trials of safety and efficacy of antiviral cannabinoids are urgently needed.”

“Antiviral activities of some of the most abundant cannabinoids have been documented in silicoin vitro, and in vivo. Studies of the antiviral activities of the more than 100 less abundant cannabinoids are still needed as are carefully designed clinical trials. Based on the preclinical evidence of antiviral activity as well as oral bioavailability and long history of safe human use of cannabinoids individually or as mixtures, multiple clinical studies of antiviral cannabinoid safety and efficacy are in progress worldwide using CBD and Δ9-THC, and additional studies will certainly follow.”

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