Alzheimer’s Research UK is to sponsor a clinical trial of GW Pharmaceuticals’ Sativex to treat agitation and aggression in people with dementia.
Sativex, which is approved to treat MS, is a peppermint-flavoured mouth spray that contains a 1:1 ratio of two key cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant.
It became the first cannabis-based medicine to be licensed (as a schedule 4 drug) in the UK back in 2010, years ahead of the change in the law last November, when it became legal for specialist doctors to prescribe cannabis-based products for medicinal use.
It is authorised for the treatment of muscle stiffness and tightness experienced by those with multiple sclerosis, but it isn’t available for routine use in England as NICE judged it to be not cost-effective in 2014.
Now the oral spray will now undergo testing to examine whether it is effective for treating agitation or aggression in people with Alzheimer’s, a common problem for sufferers and their carers.
The trial, known as STAND (Sativex for the Treatment of AgitatioN in Dementia), will recruit Alzheimer’s patients (aged between 55-90) who are living in care homes and are presenting symptoms of agitation.
Dr David Reynolds, Chief Scientific Officer of Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research charity said: “While a major focus for dementia research is to develop drugs that slow or stop the progression of the physical diseases that cause dementia, what really matters is that a medicine benefits people’s day-to-day lives.
Alliqua BioMedical to spin off and merge its Contract Manufacturing Business with TO Pharmaceuticals
Alliqua BioMedical, Inc. (Nasdaq: ALQA) and TO Pharmaceuticals LLC, a privately held cannabinoid-based pharmaceutical therapy company (“TOP”), today announced plans for Alliqua to spin off its AquaMed Technologies, Inc. (“AquaMed”) subsidiary, which develops, manufactures and markets high water content, electron beam cross-linked aqueous polymer sheet hydrogel products and merge it with TOP, creating a new public bio-pharmaceutical company to be called TO Pharma, focused on discovering, developing and commercializing novel therapeutics based on TOP’s proprietary cannabinoid product platform in a number of FDA-regulated clinical indications and in select OTC markets.