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Cannabis biotech Zelda and viagra mouth spray maker Suda are teaming up to join the already-competitive pot spray market.

Over the next 12 months the two will investigate oral formulations of cannabis for Suda’s (ASX:SUD) mouth spray delivery system.

A 24-month option gives Zelda (ASX:ZLD) a right to extend the agreement and to enter into an exclusive global development and licensing agreement with Suda over whatever they make.

There aren’t many ways to get cannabis effectively into the body, in a dose controlled form, and mouth sprays are one of the more popular methods.

In Australia alone, Medlab Clinical (ASX:MDC) already has a cannabis mouth spray on the market, UK company GW Pharma’s mouth spray Sativex is one of two registered drugs available here (all other products are unregistered medicines).

Cannabis and viagra

Zelda is trialing cannabis formulations on insomnia, paediatric autism, and most recently opioid addiction.

CEO Richard Hopkins said at an investor briefing on Tuesday they deliberately looked for areas where people already use cannabis — for pain, sleep and anxiety — in order to bring a product to market with clinical trial data behind it.

Suda first mentioned that it was looking to get into the hot cannabis market with a statement hidden in a press release on September 12.

The West Australian biotech is developing a mouth spray using the drug Sildenafil — sold under the brand Viagra — to help arterial hypertension (which is what it was originally designed for) and its more commonly known use.

Suda’s other mouth spray applications include malaria and epilepsy and the insomnia pill Zolpidem, which pro-golfer Tiger Woods had in his system when arrested for driving offences in May (and to spice up his love life back in 2009).

Selling to the Germans

Zelda is putting a cannabis product through clinical trials for insomnia now, and Dr Hopkins says the data should be ready by mid-2019.

After that they intend to start selling immediately in Germany through cannabis distributor HAPA — the company tech-wreck 1-Page bought earlier this year.

Germany is a major cannabis market. The drug is available through the medical system and funded by insurers.

“We’re applying a classic pharma model,” Dr Hopkins said. “You must own [IP].”

But they aren’t immediately registering their products as drugs, meaning they will be more expensive than untested products — but, they hope, more appealing to newbie users — yet cheaper than GW Pharma’s Sativex and Epidiolex registered drugs.

Suda stock was flat at 0.6c while Zelda stock rose 7 per cent to 4.9c on Thursday morning.