Starting from the end of 2019, the world’s population is facing the spread of the novel coronavirus, also called SARS-CoV-2. At present, there is no recommended specific antiviral treatment for the COVID-19 pandemic, and the treatment strategy to deal with infection is only supportive.

A report in Cells magazine believes that the mesenchymal stem cell secretion group can display a wide range of pharmacological effects, including anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, regenerative, pro-angiogenic and anti-fibrotic properties, which may provide a new treatment method.

Tel Aviv University has developed a novel and revolutionary method to treat COVID-19 using cannabidiol (CBD) loaded exosomes(CLX). The team led by Professor Daniel Offen, a leading researcher in the field of neuroscience and exosome technology at Tel Aviv University, will develop products based on cell therapy based on his previous work in this field.

Recently, in vivo and in vitro studies have shown that exosomes derived from mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) can promote the regeneration of damaged tissue and improve the immune response process. Exosomes can be packaged with anti-inflammatory drugs against inflamed organs. Professor Offen and his team have successfully loaded various molecules in exosomes. They also successfully treated various tissue damages in animal models, while significantly reducing inflammation and pathological damage.

To date, there have been hundreds of clinical studies using exosomes worldwide, indicating their therapeutic potential in different applications. Animal studies have also shown that CBD can effectively reduce lung inflammation. Based on these findings, CLX therapy is believed to have the potential to treat COVID-19 by combining CBD with exosomes to produce a therapeutic synergy.

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So far, there is no specific antiviral treatment for SARS-CoV-2 infected patients. Although symptomatic and supportive care is strongly recommended for patients with severe infections, even with mechanical ventilation or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), patients with elder age and comorbidities (such as diabetes and heart disease) still have a high risk of adverse consequences. This pilot clinical trial of Tel Aviv University will explore the safety and effectiveness of aerosol inhalation of heterologous adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cell-derived exosomes (MSCs-Exo).

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