Medical cannabis research is about to get a big boost
Special Report: Medical cannabis is already used to improve the treatment of everything from anxiety to multiple sclerosis but MGC Pharma says there are more cannabis-focused medical discoveries on the horizon.
The biopharma (ASX:MXC) announced today it is partnering with two top universities – The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem – to launch an international research hub called CannaHub.
CannaHub will focus exclusively on the development of new medical cannabis-based treatments, serving as a shared international library of research, data and analytics on cannabis and its medical applications.
The hub, set to launch in Q1 2019, will also serve as MGC’s primary R&D engine and cover projects across the cannabis value chain – supporting the company’s ‘seed to pharma’ business model.
Findings resulting from the hub will belong to each of the three founding partners and MGC will have the first right of ownership on intellectual property that could potentially deliver commercial outcomes.
Co-founder and managing director Roby Zomer says initial hub projects will focus on cancer treatments, the effectiveness of traditional and medicinal cannabis combination treatments and innovative drug delivery devices and systems.
“CannaHub is designed to advance world-leading research and push forward innovation within the medicinal cannabis pharmaceutical market.”
“We look forward to working with the teams at RMIT and HUJ and delivering groundbreaking results in the future for all CannaHub stakeholders, and the medicinal cannabis industry.”
A long-standing partnership
CannaHub is unique as it marks the first time that either RMIT or HUJ has partnered with a private enterprise to form a research institute.
It aims to provide a platform for all global universities and industries to share intellectual and material resources to develop innovative cannabis-based products.
MGC’s VP of business development Ron Lipksy told Stockhead the company recognised early on that a strong commitment to research was critical in demonstrating the medical applications for cannabis and supporting doctor training.
“Innovation needs to happen in collaboration with the academic sphere to achieve the legitimacy required to gain significant traction among doctors and medical schools.”
“If a company skips these crucial steps in getting the data, it will end up with claims it can’t verify and doctors who don’t know how to properly prescribe the products.”
RMIT associate professor Nitin Mantri says the hub will serve as a valuable resource for the medical cannabis industry.
“There is a growing body of evidence supporting the use of medicinal cannabis for the treatment of a wide range of ailments and no singular location exists to bring all this information together.”
“We hope that this project will provide researchers and practitioners a valuable source of information, support and funding to drive the development and growth of the medical cannabis industry.”
Other leading research departments and universities will be invited to join CannaHub with the opportunity to participate in ground-breaking medicinal cannabis research projects and the potential to access established research infrastructures, royalty payments and funding.
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