KEY POINTS

  • MRSA is a superbug based infection that is highly antibiotic-resistant and contagious
  • A marijuana component, cannabigerol seems to be a cure according to new research
  • Marijuana is increasingly being used in research for combating diseases such as cancer and epilepsy

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) is a disease that terrifies many. It is resistant to drugs such as methicillin, penicillin, oxacillin, and amoxicillin can be fatal and is highly contagious. New therapy holds hope for patients suffering from the deadly disease.

According to a new study, the non-psychoactive compound of marijuana may help cure patients of the antibiotic-resistant bacterial infection.

The study was published in the American Chemical Society’s Infectious Diseases journal Wednesday. The researchers highlighted that marijuana component cannabigerol (CBG) may be a potentially beneficial component in MRSA treatment. It involved testing 18 different molecules found in cannabis to treat MRSA. These molecules included THC and CBC, which are the psychoactive components of the plant, but CBG which showed effectiveness in combating Staphylococcus aureus, the bacteria which causes MRSA.

CBG was tested on mice infected with MRSA. It was found to be as effective as vancomycin, which is currently used to treat bacterial infections. When both are combined, they were able to target gram-negative bacteria; they were able to target to punch holes in the bacteria’s outer lining.

This combination was able to target the bacteria and prevent biofilm formation on the surface of the skin.

While cannabis plants have been long a part of folk medicine, new research has shed on its potential for use in modern medicine. The fact that it can treat superbug infections such as MRSA holds hope for the treatment of such diseases. If the trials are successful, it will be the first time in 30 years that scientists will be able to synthesize a new antibiotic.

It also increasingly seems that the fear and paranoia around marijuana may have set back research for many diseases. Marijuana is increasingly being used in research for treating cancer, epilepsy and many other diseases.

A cannabis plant mascot entertains patients at the opening of a medical marijuana clinic in Bangkok A cannabis plant mascot entertains patients at the opening of a medical marijuana clinic in Bangkok Photo: AFP / Mladen ANTONOV