Leading Czech scientists and doctors confirm the positive effects of active substances from hemp, so-called cannabinoids (CBD), on the human organism. Cannabinoids act against various bacteria, are anti-inflammatory and have antioxidant effects. Special teams of scientists are now investigating the selection, cultivation and most suitable processing of cannabis for medical and cosmetic purposes. But they are already suitable dermatocosmetics for the treatment of skin inflammations and wounds.
"In our research activities and in several realized pharmaceutical and biotechnological research projects and subsequently in the development of new products, we constantly find that there are really big differences between individual products with CBD content on the market. It is not only about the price, but mainly about their composition and thus also their effectiveness. Research has confirmed that many cannabinoids really show a number of biological activities, such as action against pathogenic bacteria, antioxidant effects and especially the reduction of inflammatory factors, and products containing them thus have the potential to help with a number of health problems, especially skin problems, but it is important to know what follow their choice ," says Doc. Ing. Petr Kaštánek, PhD ., scientist, director and founder of the EcoFuel Laboratories research laboratory and the Neobotanics brand.
In recent years, EcoFuel has participated in five state-supported research projects focused on research into the use of hemp and its active substances - cannabinoids (CBD).
"We managed to put together several top expert teams, including, in addition to researchers from our company, leading Czech scientists and doctors from the University of Chemistry and Technology in Prague, the Botanical Institute of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, the University Hospital of Královská Vinohrady and the Institute of Chemical Processes of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic. These teams cover the entire issue of cultivation, analysis and processing of cannabis, as well as the development and testing of cosmetic and medicinal preparations, " says doc. Chestnut .
Cannabis research was started at the BIORAF Competence Center for Biorefining Research, supported by the TAČR agency, where extensive indoor experiments with hemp cultivation were carried out. This was followed by research within the national competence center BIOCIRTECH, where advanced methods of isolation of active substances from cannabis – cannabinoids – were developed, and methods of the so-called circular economy were applied, comprehensively valorizing the entire residual biomass of cannabis, in our case on innovative sorbents based on active charcoal from hemp stalks. New active substances from hemp roots were also obtained for industrial use. In a program supported by the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic, preparations based on microorganisms are being developed, which on the one hand enable the ecological production of hemp without the use of common industrial fertilizers and pesticides, and on the other hand make it possible to increase the production of desired cannabinoids. It was possible to develop a new biopreparation, the application of which increases the yield of active substances by tens of percent during the growth of cannabis. As part of this project, a licensed experimental cannabis plant is also operated, in which more than 50 different varieties of cannabis, mainly for medicinal purposes, differing in the profile of active substances, are produced. Specific combinations of more than 800 substances contained in these varieties responsible for the different bioactive effects of each variety. This composition is analyzed in detail in the project and dozens of biological activities of extracts obtained from these varieties are evaluated using a unique robotic station capable of carrying out thousands of experiments.
" This gives us a huge amount of information about which active substances or their combinations are responsible, e.g. for proven strong antimicrobial, antioxidant, anticancer or anti-inflammatory activity. It also answers questions about which varieties and especially which processing procedures are suitable for specific diseases or patient problems, " adds doc. Chestnut.
All these activities were followed up this year by a basic research project between VŠCHT Prague and IKEM, which aims to clarify the mechanisms of the anti-inflammatory effects of cannabinoids, which may eventually lead to the development of new drugs. An important part of the project is also the study of the synergistic effects of individual cannabis substances and the development of methods that increase the bioavailability of such formulations for the organism and the associated increase in the effectiveness of therapy.
However, a number of these discoveries and formulations, implemented in research projects, aimed primarily at the modern pharmaceutical field and the treatment of skin inflammations and wounds, are already being used in the field of dermatocosmetics.
What to look for when buying products with CBD?
In recent years, a large number of CBD products have appeared on the market. Due to the complexity of the issue, however, it is safer to buy only products from reputable manufacturers who have the necessary certifications and consistent standardization and quality control of products and clearly stated product composition. Also, beware of exaggerated promises that hemp products are a "miracle panacea".
A number of commonly available hemp products on the market also contain only hemp seed oil. Although this oil has a positive effect on the skin (similar to many other vegetable oils), CBD or other bioactive cannabinoids are practically not present in it. In contrast to these products, NEOBOTANICS CBD balms and gels contain, in addition to hemp seed oil, a high and standardized content of cannabidiol (CBD) and a synergistic terpene (see the Entourage effect mentioned above). The actual CBD for NEOBOTANICS products is obtained by advanced extraction and separation methods from technical hemp. This hemp is grown using sustainable farming methods by farmers in the European Union, using varieties certified here.
However, this is not all that is important to focus on when choosing a product, the key role is not so much the CBD content of the product as the formulation used, while the appropriate formulation differs depending on the application. Therefore, balms and ointments in which CBD is dissolved in oil are more suitable for the treatment of superficial skin problems. However, in this form, CBD is practically not absorbed into the skin and remains mainly only on its surface. If we want to act on problems in the deeper layers of the skin, for effective penetration of CBD it is necessary to encapsulate it in "nano-balls", whether in the form of nanoemulsions or liposomal systems.