Antibiotic-resistant bacteria pose a serious threat to the world’s health, but a new study shows that CBD might be able to help.
A study published in the journal of Nature Communications Biology suggests that a chemical compound found in cannabis (CBD) may be able to kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
In the findings, it was shown the non-psychoactive cannabinoid, Cannabidiol or CBD, killed a number of highly resistant bacteria such as meningitis, MRSA, and gonorrhoea.
Bacteria are classified into two main categories; gram-positive and gram-negative. Previous studies have shown that CBD is effective in killing various strains of gram-positive bacteria, but it was still unclear whether it would work for gram-negative. Researchers speculated that the cannabinoid compound would not work on the more robust membrane layer of gram-negative types. This additional layer usually protects the bacteria from even the strongest antibiotics.
In the study, the researchers applied a synthetic CBD along with other CBD variants to samples of pig skins that had been infected with various types of bacteria.
The results showed that CBD was effective in penetrating and killing a vast range of gram-positive bacteria. This included even the more complex of cases including Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), which is normally quite difficult to treat.
But the most important findings showed that CBD could destroy a number of gram-negative bacteria, including Neisseria meningitides (meningitis) and Neisseria gonorrhoea (gonorrhoea).
Clinicians studied the antibacterial effect of 5 Cannabinoids (THC CBD CBN CBC CBG) & found that CBG (Cannabigerol) has a potent bacterial-killing capacity. Results suggest a new protocol in the fight against drug-resistant staph infections. #Mmemberville https://t.co/iQKtpBZhzM
— ElixirSymbol© (@ElixirSymbol) June 26, 2020
Neisseria gonorrhoeae is classified by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as a “high priority” pathogen due to its antibiotic-resistant nature. The group raised concerns this resistance could mutate into a “super gonorrhea” and rapidly spread. The results displayed that CBD showed no propensity to bacteria resistance, indicating that more effective treatments for antibiotic-resistant bacteria could be on its way.
“We think that cannabidiol kills bacteria by bursting their outer cell membranes, but we don’t know yet exactly how it does that, and need to do further research,” study author and Associate Professor at the University of Queensland Mark Blaskovich said in a statement.
— Peter Grinspoon MD (@Peter_Grinspoon) January 20, 2021