As the country is becoming increasingly more open-minded, letting go of obsolete values and accepting more new stuff, the stigma on marijuana is also slowly fading away. Of course, the Obama administration had a lot to do with it, and a republican mandate might actually revert us to the state of close mindedness of a few years ago, but that’s beside the point.
Proving that cannabis plants could be a huge boon to the medical industry, a marijuana-based epilepsy drug just aced trials. The developers are soon going to approach the United States Food and Drug Administration in order to seek regulatory approval of the treatment.
According to GW Pharmaceuticals’ Chief Executive, Justin Gover,
This shows that cannabinoids can produce compelling and clinical important data and represent a highly promising new class of medications, hopefully in a range of conditions. It clearly provides us with an excellent basis to be confident about the outcome of the additional trials because this trial has shown that the previous open-label data was very predictive.
The additional trials Gover is talking about refer to the trails the company is going to make in their attempts to widen the range of the medication to other diseases – to other forms of epilepsy – as well. And with the amount of success they’ve had with the current form, the developers are optimistic.
Epidiolex is the GW Pharmaceuticals drug that stirred so much attention and helped the company’s stocks skyrocket. The drug just aced the first of its four Phase III trials in treating the rare form of epilepsy known as Dravet syndrome. They helped confirm the medicinal benefits of the marijuana plant’s cannabinoids.
Even though there are currently no approved treatments whatsoever for the horrific illness, the trials showed that Epidiolex managed to reduce the seizure rates of the 120 patients by as much as 39%. This is what made the researchers behind it hopeful that it might help in other similar diseases.
The company is currently running Phase III trials for another rare type of epilepsy called the Lennoux-Gastaut syndrome, and will soon start another series of tests for a third type of epilepsy – tuberous sclerosis complex.
Since the medicine is going to be intensely used by children, the cannabinoids were purified so as to get rid of the plant’s psychoactive effects. The researchers then ended up with a child-friendly syrup. Analysts estimate that the drug will generate annual sales of $1.1 billion by 2021, causing the company’s stocks to go up 125%.
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