On June 24, 2019, at the Annual American Society for Microbiology conference in San Francisco, researchers from The University of Queensland announced that CBD could be a natural antibiotic. This is particularly good news in the medical world as antibiotic resistance is reaching dangerously high levels, and an alternative to traditional antibiotics is a welcome change.
Exciting research showed that CBD has promising antibiotic properties against certain strains of bacteria, such as the infection-causing Staph and Strep, which have become resistant to traditional antibiotics.Dr. Mark Blaskovich, Ph.D., senior research officer, and his research team at the Center for Superbug Solutions at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland, Australia collaborated with Botanix Pharmaceuticals Ltd, who are studying the potential uses of CBD to treat skin conditions. It is known that CBD consumption and usage is safe for humans and research is being conducted to expand the use of CBD further.
The study found that Cannabidiol, which is extracted from the hemp plant, was incredibly effective at killing a wide range of Gram-Positive bacteria including Staphylococcus aureus which causes infections like MRSA and Streptococcus pneumonia which causes Pneumonia. CBD was also effective at disrupting biofilms, which is a physical bacteria growth that leads to frustrating infections. This is a breakthrough in microbiology and could ultimately lead to a new treatment for humans.
While this news is especially exciting for the Hemp industry and community, it is important to note that researchers do not know what made CBD so effective at fighting the infections in the lab. Additionally, all the research was carried out in a lab, on bacteria cultures and in test tubes - Not actual humans. Therefore you should not attempt to treat infections with homemade remedies. Dr. Blaskovich warned, “It would be very dangerous to try to treat a serious infection with cannabidiol instead of one of the tried and tested antibiotics”.
Further research needs to be conducted to study the long term effects and resistance of CBD as an antibiotic. Blaskovich stated, “To be really useful, it would be good if we could show that it treated systemic infections, e.g. pneumonia, or complicated tissue infections, where you have to give it orally or by intravenous dosing. A very preliminary study didn’t show that it works in these more difficult models.” Moving forward, Blaskovich and his team will begin animal studies to understand what else CBD might treat and how it can kill the bacteria. Botanix Pharmaceuticals is planning to run clinical human trials to explore the use of CBD for staph bacteria on the skin, to prevent post-surgical infections.
Hemp is great for your diet, with countless nutritional benefits - it is high in protein and rich in two essential fatty acids. Hemp can also help soothe skin conditions through its skin cell regeneration properties and can even be used to help you drift off into a soft slumber. On top of all of these amazing qualities, who knew that CBD is turning out to possibly be antibacterial too?