This piece first appeared in Cannabis Now.
Cannabidiol has been shown to snuff out bacteria in the lab.
In these brave new times when cannabis is being dissected by popular culture as a means for separating themselves from the supposed evil that is getting high, cannabidiol (CBD), the non-intoxicating part of the cannabis plant, is gaining popularity for a variety of therapeutic purposes.
First, it was pegged as an effective treatment for children with epilepsy, but it soon gained notoriety as a miracle drug, of sorts, capable of treating and, in some cases, curing whatever ails ya’.
It is for this reason that, despite the lack of hard evidence proving that this rockstar cannabinoid is capable of doing any of the things that “they” say it can, people all across the United States, even those with absolutely no history of pot consumption, are looking to CBD to help them keep at least one foot out of the grave.
So it should come as no surprise when we tell you that a new study has found that CBD has yet another medicinal superpower. It has shown promise as an antibiotic against those nasty, life-threatening superbugs.
Researchers at the University of Queensland’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience’s Centre for Superbug Solutions in Australia have found that CBD has the unique power to snuff out bacteria in a laboratory setting.
But not just any bacteria, mind you. CBD apparently is “remarkably effective” at killing what is called gram-positive bacteria, which includes staphylococcus, streptococcus and other “bacteria that have become resistant to the most commonly used antibiotics,” lead researcher Dr. Mark Blaskovich explained.
If the results hold any weight, CBD could eventually be what saves mankind from extinction. OK, maybe we won’t get that lucky. But it is certainly a development that could help combat the problem we are having right now with antibiotic resistance. This curse on civilization as we know it is considered one of the greatest threats to the well-being of the global population, according to the World Health Organization.
Considering all of the insanity that seems to have been put here to destroy us, the idea that CBD could one day be used to battle it out with bugs hellbent on annihilation is, well, pretty cool.
Don’t you think?
But don’t just start popping CBD gummies or guzzling hemp oil the next time you get a staph infection. Scientists connected to this study say they have a long way to go before there is definitive evidence that this cannabis derivative works as an antibiotic. As far as they can tell, at least at this juncture, CBD has about the same potency as many common antibiotics. And when used against select strains of staph and strep, CBD killed these bacteria faster than antibiotics like Vancocin.
However, the study did not find CBD favorable for combatting gram-negative bacteria. Bugs that cause food poisoning (salmonella and E.coli) were not at all phased by the almighty greatness that is CBD. In other words, that special sauce on Carl’s Jr. CBD burger is not going to have mercy on you once your belly starts churning. And it could possibly, definitely, probably, maybe do that.
You have been warned.
CBD is not yet considered an effective antibiotic, researchers want to make that perfectly clear. Anyone who disregards modern medicine and opts instead to ride the CBD trend out of a wicked infection could end up on a slab down at the local morgue. “It needs a lot more work to show [that CBD] would be useful to treat infections in humans,” Blaskovich told Live Science. “It would be very dangerous to try to treat a serious infection with cannabidiol instead of one of the tried and tested antibiotics.”
Furthermore, researchers are not sure just how CBD might become the sword that takes down the monster that is antibiotic resistance. For now, all they can really say is it does show some promise. But all of the results were conjured through a laboratory cage match between CBD and bacteria. The concept of using this compound as a human antibiotic has not been tried in any way. There is a possibility that once it has, the outcome will be completely different. Scientists just don’t know.
Still, scientists say it is a study worth some additional attention. Because if there is any chance that CBD could help us put a leash on superbugs, then we need to do whatever it takes to see that through.
“Given cannabidiol’s documented anti-inflammatory effects, existing safety data in humans, and potential for varied delivery routes, it is a promising new antibiotic worth further investigation,” Blaskovich said.