Alibi V.29 No.9 • Feb 27-March 4, 2020 

News on the Green

ACS Infectious Diseases
CBG vs. MRSA

Scientists at Ontario’s McMaster University have published new research that reveals that the cannabinoid cannabigerol (CBG) is more than merely antibacterial; in mice studies, it also proved effective against the scarily resilient bacteria family known as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). “Uncovering the Hidden Antibiotic Potential of Cannabis,” published on Feb. 6 by peer-reviewed journal American Chemical Society Infectious Diseases, shows that CBG exhibits clinically significant antibacterial activity against MRSA, “inhibit[ing] its ability to form biofilms and eradicat[ing] preformed biofilms and stationary phase cells persistent to antibiotics.” According to the new science, CBG works by targeting the cytoplasmic membranes of gram-positive bacteria and by acting on the inner membrane of gram-negative organisms that have a permeabilized outer membrane. The interdisciplinary research team at McMaster also demonstrated that CBG works in concert with polymyxin B against multi-drug resistant gram-negative pathogens, revealing this cannabinoid’s “broad-spectrum therapeutic potential.” Study leader Eric Brown, a biochemistry and biomedical sciences professor who has studied the antibiotic potential of cannabis since Canada legalized it, notes an essential caveat, CBG’s toxicity to host cells, which makes the study findings an important lead, not a potential final product. “It opens a therapeutic window, but a narrow one, to develop this into a drug,” Brown said. “The next steps are to try to make the compound better in that it is more specific to the bacteria and has a lower chance of toxicity.”

/ CC BY 2.0
Coronavirus vs. Commerce

As coronavirus’ spread continues to foment fear of a global pandemic, anyone who runs a business—whether a Fortune 500 company or a tiny mom-and-pop sundry shop—is beginning to consider coronavirus’ impact on their economic bottom line. The New York Times reports that the World Health Organization raised its global coronavirus risk assessment from “high” to “very high,” the most serious category of its new four-stage alert system. Additionally, the Times reports that the Trump administration may use a 1950s law, The Defense Production Act, to step up emergency supply production. Alex M. Azar II, the health and human services secretary, said on Friday that the Korean War-era law “requires manufacturers to speed up production of emergency supplies needed to fight the new coronavirus.” The impact of the epidemic’s spread on commerce is considered by John Schroyer & Bart Schaneman on Marijuana Business Daily in “Concerns looming over coronavirus impact on cannabis industry, but some US firms could gain from fallout,” noting that: “The likely impacts on the marijuana and hemp industries include: shortages of hardware manufactured in China, especially for cannabis vaporizers, as well as marijuana product packaging and specialty equipment for testing labs, extraction facilities and other businesses; shortfalls of raw Chinese hemp material being exported to the U.S. and elsewhere, and financial ripple effects from the downturn in stock markets, further scaring off investors from cannabis.”

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