The latest research consisting of a murine model of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) indicates that cannabidiol (CBD) help the lungs recover from excessive inflammation. This early evidence shows that CBD could help patients showing signs of respiratory distress avoid interventions like mechanical ventilation and death from acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).
“ARDS is a major killer in severe cases of some respiratory viral infections, including SARS-CoV-2 and we have an urgent need for better intervention and treatment strategies,” stated Dr. Babak Baban, Immunologist and Interim Associate Dean for Research at Dental College of Georgia at Augusta University. Dr. Babak Baban is the corresponding author of the study published in the Journal Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research.
The study’s co-author Dr. Jack Yu, a Physician-Scientist and Chief of Paediatric Plastic Surgery at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University, further explained that the CBD research indicates pure CBD can help the lungs recover from the cytokine storm caused by the COVID-19 virus and restore healthier oxygen levels in the body.
The Sars-CoV-2 Research
To safely study the effects viruses, the researchers worked on a lung model that duplicates the damage caused by ARDS. The result? The team stated the overcharged immune response that damages the lungs causes a change in the function of the lungs, where they become a breeding ground for the virus, rather than operating to transfer oxygen to the blood and remove accumulating carbon dioxide and other waste products from the circulation.
While mechanical ventilators do in fact offset this, evidence suggests nearly 30-50 percent of patients who get to the point of mechanical ventilation, do not survive.
CBD and the Immune System
CBD is believed to suppress the immune response because of its close similarities to endocannabinoids, a natural cell signaling system in our bodies believed to be involved in a wide variety of functions from sleep to reproduction to inflammation and immune response.
The main receptors for this system, CB1 and CB2, are found extensively throughout the body including the brain and respiratory system. While understanding the workings of the natural endocannabinoid system is still very much a work in progress, it is thought that CBD can act upon these receptors.