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Breaking: Indian hemp can cure COVID-19 complications

A new study claims that three strains from the cannabis plant can inhibit cytokine storms, a severe case of respiratory inflammation, and reduce the risk of developing pulmonary fibrosis in COVID-19 patients.

The study, which is a joint work carried out by the Pathway Research Inc., University of Calgary and University of Lethbridge, all in Canada, was published in Aging, a peer-reviewed medical journal.
The researchers say cytokine storms occur when the body overproduces immune cells and their activating compounds (cytokines), causing dangerously high blood pressure, lung damage, respiratory distress syndrome and organ failure.

They noted that it is a common occurrence in some patients where the immune system’s response to COVID-19 is extreme and goes into overdrive to fight the virus.

Accumulating evidence, the researchers noted, shows that many COVID-19 patients die due to increase in the production of the inflammatory cytokine molecules, rather than the virus itself.

Explaining how they arrived at their findings, the team explained that they induced inflammations within 3D-printed skin tissue samples and tested seven different strains of Cannabis Sativa on them, which were selected from 200 strains that were initially analysed.
It was discovered that three of the tested strains were able to inhibit cytokine storms and mitigate future risks of developing pulmonary fibrosis, which causes permanent scarring of the lungs.

Study participant, Dr. Igor Kovalchuk, of the Department of Biological Sciences, University of Lethbridge, Alberta, said he was not surprised by the findings.

“Before COVID-19, we have studied the anti-inflammatory effect of over 100 cultivars (preselected from nearly 800), and identified a couple dozen with strong potential, and even filed several patents on them for use with RA, MS, intestinal, and skin inflammation, and oral inflammation,” Kovalchuk was quoted by Jerusalem Post as saying.

He, however, recommended that the whole plant be ingested, preferably by smoking, as many terpenes (natural products) can get lost in the evaporation process.

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