A combination of CBD and terpenes was three time more effective in stopping coronavirus-related inflammation run amok compared to dexamethasone.
Public health officials have lamented the rush to locate a reliable Covid-19 treatment has led to “desperation science,” marked by maverick experimentation and faulty research. And while skeptics may lump cannabis in with that description, early trial results indicate otherwise.
A recent study promoted by the World Health Organization just reported that dexamethasone, a cheap steroid, improved a coronavirus patient’s chance of survival. Dexamethasone reduced deaths by 36% among patients that needed breathing machines. The risk of death for those who only needed supplemental oxygen dropped 18%.
Israeli researchers in laboratory settings, meanwhile, tested dexamethasone against CBD treatment and a combined CBD and terpene formula. Dexamethasone inhibited cytokine activity by about 30%. On the other hand, the combined CBD and terpene formula inhibited about 90% of cytokines. Using CBD or terpenes alone resulted in a 75-80% reduction in cytokines.
“The preliminary results were highly positive,” Nadav Eyal, lead researcher and data scientist, told Forbes. He added that they’re “demonstrating significant anti-inflammatory activity of terpenes and breaking the perception that terpenes are just flavorings and fragrances compounds with a placebo effect.”
Of note: This is still a clinical trial and it’s important not to crown CBD and terpenes as the coronavirus savior just yet. The study still requires completion and publication in a peer-reviewed journal before it becomes a widespread therapeutic treatment. But these early results do showcase cannabis as a possible and useful tool against COVID-19.