In just under two weeks, the rest of Australia will catch up with Queensland, and CBD products will be available for over the counter purchase, upon consultation with a pharmacist but without any need for a prescription.
It’s a pretty significant move, especially considering the fact our mates over in New Zealand narrowly voted no to legalising cannabis in a non-binding referendum.
And soon enough, CBD could be used to treat sexually transmitted infections. New research has shown that CBD has antibiotic potential – it could kill the bacteria responsible for legionnaires disease, meningitis and gonorrhoea.
Researchers from the University of Queensland, and collaborators Botanix Pharmaceuticals Limited, are pretty excited about this as it could lead to “the first new class of antibiotics for resistant bacteria in 60 years”.
This is especially important as gonorrhoea is particularly good at developing resistance to antibiotics – there’s no longer a single reliable antibiotic to treat it, and here in Australia gonorrhoea is the second most common STI.
It’s like Vince Ippolito, the President and Executive Chairman of Botanix, said, “This is a major breakthrough that the world needs now.”
So what makes CBD so effective as an antibiotic? According to Dr Blaskovich, from the university’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience, “This is the first time CBD has been shown to kill some types of Gram-negative bacteria. These bacteria have an extra outer membrane, an additional line of defence that makes it harder for antibiotics to penetrate.”
Through this study, CBD has now also been found to be widely effective against a much larger number of Gram-positive bacteria. This includes such antibiotic-resistant pathogens like golden staph, known as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
What does this discovery mean moving forward? Well, the collaboration between the university and Botanix has enabled the latter to move forward in clinical trials that use a topical CBD formulation for decolonisation of golden staph before surgery.
Results are expected early this year, and may pave the way forward for treatments for gonorrhoea, meningitis and legionnaires disease.