Aequus Pharmaceuticals and the Canadian Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD) are collaborating in preclinical studies evaluating the safety and efficacy of cannabinoid-based products for epilepsy as well as other other neurological and psychiatric disorders.
Since last year, Health Canada has been giving patients access to medical cannabis when recommended by their physicians. As such, Aequus — which, like CDRD, is based in Vancouver — has introduced a research program of cannabinoid-based therapeutics to treat symptoms of neurological disorders like epilepsy.
The program, called AQS1304 – Transdermal Medical Cannabis, will directly address dose delivery, dose consistency and reliable clinical data now lacking in the field of medical cannabis for patients living with a variety of symptoms and diseases, says the company website.
Results from a recent Aequus survey confirm the need for evidence-based data on the efficacy and safety medical cannabis, quality controlled ingredients and physician education, as well as the reliability of dose delivery systems and high-quality data collection tracking real world clinical outcomes.
Under the new research collaboration, Aequus and CDRD will conduct in vitro and in vivo preclinical studies on toxicology, pharmacology and formulation optimization studies in epilepsy and other disease models. Upon Health Canada’s approval, the studies will begin at CDRD’s Vancouver facilities. Aequus will be responsible for commercializing any products advanced through its collaboration with CDRD.
“This is an exciting step as we advance toward our goal of providing patients and physicians with clinically validated cannabinoid containing treatments delivered in a more precise and optimized manner than inhaling or ingesting, the most common current methods of delivery,” Aequus Chairman and CEO Doug Janzen said in a press release.
Added Gordon McCauley, CDRD’s president and CEO: “Our partnership with Aequus is a great example of the work we do with biotech across the country. There is a clear unmet medical need in the area of medical cannabinoid research and development where CDRD and Aequus can collaborate and share their respective expertise that could lead to new cannabinoid therapeutics and a pathway to clinical trials, particularly in neurological movement disorders.”