Oregon State University researchers have identified hemp compounds that show an ability to prevent the virus that causes COVID-19 from entering human cells. University researchers say a pair of cannabinoid acids bind to the COVID-19 spike protein, which stops the virus from infecting people. OSU said this “spike protein is the same drug target used in COVID-19 vaccines and antibody therapy.” A disease or virus follows a specific process for infecting a person, and a drug target is any molecule critical to that process that can be disrupted to stop any infection or progression.
“The cannabinoid acids are abundant in hemp and many hemp extracts,” said Richard van Breemen, an Oregon State researcher. “They aren’t controlled substances like THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, and they have a good safety profile in humans.”
He also said the research shows the hemp compounds were equally effective against the alpha and beta variants of COVID-19.
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