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Natural products and hemp: Under-appreciated sources for COVID-19 therapeutic agents

Science Pub presents:

Richard B. van Breemen, Ph.D.
Professor of Pharmaceutical Science

College of Pharmacy
Linus Pauling Institute
Global Hemp Innovation Center

Natural products account for about half of all drugs currently in use, and 90% of molecules made by nature remain to be evaluated for pharmaceutical activity. Despite this, every major pharmaceutical company has dismantled their natural product drug discovery programs, and the U.S. National Institutes of Health supports very little natural product drug discovery research. Hemp is a particularly rich source of unique natural products, many of which have pharmacological activity. However, the U.S. Government prohibited the propagation of hemp from 1936 until 2014, and many restrictions are still in place. With the passage of the U.S. Farm Bill in 2014, hemp cultivation and hemp-based products rebounded. The COVID-19 pandemic inspired a resurgence in natural products research for the discovery of new antiviral agents, and several laboratories around the world reported that certain cannabinoids from hemp exhibited anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity. Our paper reporting that CBDA, CBGA, and THCA-A from hemp could prevent cell entry and infection by SARS-CoV-2, which was published in the Journal of Natural Products in January 2022, set records for downloads and on-line views, and was covered by over 400 news agencies around the world.


Sponsors of the OSU Science Pub include OSU, Old World Deli and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.

Tuesday, December 6, 2022 at 6:00pm

Old World Deli, 341 SW 2nd St, Corvallis, OR 97333

Event Type

Lecture or Presentation

Event Topic

Academic, Health and Well-being


Community Members, Faculty and Staff, Student, Alumni, Online



College of Pharmacy, Global Hemp Innovation Center, University Events
Contact Name

Shelly Signs

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