Palm Beach, FL – April 15, 2021 – 2020 was a prosperous year for medical marijuana. In fact, North America medical marijuana market size alone was over USD 8.1 billion in 2020. The medical cannabis market has made some remarkable continued growth in revenues. Medical marijuana, also known as MMJ or medical cannabis, is the marijuana plant and derived products used for the treatment of several illnesses and conditions such as chronic pain and nausea, among others. It is used for various medical purposes such as pain management, epilepsy among others. Various efforts are underway to legalize the use of medical marijuana across major markets in Asia Pacific and Middle East region. According to Global Market Insights the Medical Marijuana Market size surpassed USD 22.4 billion in 2020 and is estimated to register over 19.3% CAGR between 2021 and 2027. “The increasing awareness among patients as well as healthcare professionals regarding the benefits of medical marijuana has compelled the regulatory authorities to consider and legalize medical cannabis. Over 30 countries have legalized its medical use through various national programs. Several states in the U.S. have also approved its medical use. However, the drug remains to be identified as illegal at the federal level, irrespective of medical or recreational use, which places it in The Controlled Substance Act of 1970, Schedule I in the U.S. As several research and development initiatives studying the medical use of marijuana are noted across countries, a dynamic legislative scenario is expected during the forecast period.” Active companies in news today include: Nextleaf Solutions Ltd. (OTCQB: OILFF) (CSE: OILS), GW Pharmaceuticals plc (NASDAQ: GWPH), Organigram Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: OGI) (TSX: OGI), Canopy Growth Corporation (NASDAQ: CGC) (TSX: WEED), British American Tobacco p.l.c. (NYSE: BTI).
The Global Market Insights report continued: “Medical marijuana continues to remain widely researched and debated for several decades. The proven medical benefits of specific marijuana-based formulations have led to the commercial approval of multiple medications from The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The rising prevalence of cancer has led to an increasing number of patients undergoing chemotherapy and largely experiencing nauseatic conditions. These are studied to be nullified with the help of THC-based medications. THC-based medications are also noted to act as appetite stimulators in cases with wasting syndrome caused owing to AIDS. Further, several THC and CBD-based medications are approved or are undergoing clinical trials for the treatment of neuropathic pain and muscle spasms. As medical marijuana is noted to act as an alternative medicine to its traditional counterparts, an increasing prevalence of illnesses is fueling the market growth.”
Nextleaf Solutions Ltd. (OTCQB: OILFF) (CSE: OILS) BREAKING NEWS – Nextleaf Solutions Awarded U.S. Patent for Synthesizing THC-O-Acetate – Nextleaf Solutions Ltd. (“Nextleaf“, “OILS“, or the “Company“), the world’s most innovative cannabis processor, is pleased to announce that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has granted the Company a patent pertaining to a novel synthetic route of modifying Tetrahydrocannabinol (“THC”) found in cannabis distillate into a more potent prodrug version of THC-O-acetate.
The Company believes the THC-derived prodrug produced under its patented process may hold significant potential as a therapeutic product due to THC-O-acetate reportedly having pronounced psychedelic effects compared THC, and positive outcomes in the treatment of chronic pain, PTSD, and alcohol use disorder.
“The U.S. continues to be the focal point of our global IP strategy,” said Nextleaf CEO Paul Pedersen. “Between operating our cannabinoid innovation lab under strict federal regulations in Canada where cannabis is federally legal and owning one of the largest U.S. patent portfolios of any cannabis company, Nextleaf has the type of robust intellectual property portfolio and scalable commercial platform that large pharmaceuticals and big tobacco companies have already targeted with M&A in 2021.”
On March 31, 2021 New York became the 16th state to legalize cannabis. The event increases pressure on the United States to progress federal marijuana reform and it is expected that legislation will be reintroduced and voted on with the Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer leading the way.
“This U.S. patent covers our method of THC acetylation and follows our previous patent for synthesizing THC-O-acetate, with improvements to reaction efficiencies,” said Nextleaf Solutions R&D Lead, Dr. David Novitski. “Our latest patented method reduces processing time and costs, which are critical when scaling up any drug delivery technology, and THC-O-acetate is no different.”
Nextleaf is exploring opportunities to commercialize this patent through IP licensing to a pharmaceutical partner or producing and distributing THC-O-acetate as a therapeutic product under the Company’s Health Canada licenses.
“To the best of our knowledge, Nextleaf is the first company in the world, publicly traded or private, to be issued patents for the production of THC-O-Acetate, a specialty molecule not legally available anywhere in the world,” said Pedersen. Read more news for Nextleaf Solutions by visiting: https://www.nextleafsolutions.com/press-releases/
In other industry news of note:
Canopy Growth Corporation (NASDAQ: CGC) (TSX: WEED), a world-leading diversified cannabis, hemp, and vaporization device company, recently announced the launch of Vert, the Company’s first Quebec-exclusive brand. The first two strains to launch under the Vert brand are ‘Green Cush’ and ‘Sour Kush’, which will be sold via the Société québécoise du cannabis (SQDC) in dried flower and pre-roll joint formats. Vert Green Cush is a sativa-dominant strain and Sour Kush is an indica-dominant strain.
“At Canopy Growth, we understand the importance of providing the Quebecmarket with a regionally-exclusive brand,” said Kelly Olsen, Vice President of Global Flower Business at Canopy Growth. “Vert cannabis is grown by an experienced community of Quebecois cultivators. We’re excited to bring a new offering of local cannabis flower to SQDC shelves.”
GW Pharmaceuticals plc (NASDAQ: GWPH), the world leader in the science, development, and commercialization of cannabinoid prescription medicines, along with U.S. subsidiary Greenwich Biosciences, recently announced that the company will present results from completed trials of EPIDIOLEX® (cannabidiol) oral solution and nabiximols, known as Sativex® outside of the U.S., at the virtual American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Annual Meeting taking place April 17-22. The company will also present findings of a survey in partnership with the North American Research Committee on Multiple Sclerosis (NARCOMS) – the world’s largest voluntary, patient-driven multiple sclerosis (MS) registry – highlighting the prevalence of cannabis use among people with MS. Additionally, the company will share an update on cannabis-based products, including the evidence-based pathway to FDA approval and related regulatory challenges.
Organigram Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: OGI) (TSX: OGI) recently announced a C$221 million strategic investment from a wholly-owned subsidiary of BAT (NYSE:BTI). The BAT subsidiary has subscribed for approximately 58.3 million common shares of OGI, which represents a 19.9% equity interest1 on a post-transaction basis for total proceeds of approximately C$221 million (“Investment Proceeds”) at a price per share of C$3.792, based on a five-day volume weighted average price on the TSX ending March 9, 2021.
Organigram Inc., a leading licensed cannabis producer and a subsidiary of Organigram Holdings Inc. (together, “Organigram” or “the Company”), and BAT have also entered into a Product Development Collaboration Agreement (the “PDC Agreement”) pursuant to which a “Center of Excellence” will be established to focus on developing the next generation of cannabis products with an initial focus on CBD. The Center of Excellence will be located at Organigram’s indoor facility in Moncton, New Brunswick, which holds the Health Canada licenses required to conduct research and development (“R&D”) activities with cannabis products. Both companies will contribute scientists, researchers, and product developers to the Center of Excellence which will be governed and supervised by a steering committee consisting of an equal number of senior members from both companies. Under the terms of the PDC Agreement, both Organigram and BAT have access to certain of each other’s intellectual property (“IP”) and, subject to certain limitations, have the right to independently, globally commercialize the products, technologies and IP created by the Center of Excellence pursuant to the PDC Agreement.
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