This Week in Cannabis: Why All the Excitement Around Medical Marijuana?

Henry Truc |

In our second week of The Future of Cannabis program, we took a deep dive into arguably the most compelling area of this growth industry to date. The biotech and healthcare segment of the rapidly emerging cannabis market largely revolves around the effects of specific components of cannabis–known as cannabinoids–and their effects on the human body, or more specifically the endocannabinoid system (ECS).

Over the course of this past week, and Viridian Capital Advisors detailed the history, progress and players of the cannabis biotech and pharma industry. We spoke with leading researchers and company executives looking to make a difference and pioneering a new area of innovation to help patients. We’ve also laid out the economic and investment potential as the market continues to mature. As we begin to really dive deeper into the specific opportunities of the wider legalization of cannabis, this is definitely a subject investors need to educate themselves on.

To learn more about The Future of Cannabis program, we encourage you to read What is The Future of Cannabis?

Here’s a recap of everything we published in our Week Two focus on the Biotech and Pharma Cannabis Market.

Week Two: The Biotech/Pharma Investment Opportunity in Cannabis

Why the Biotech Market is Looking to Cannabis for the Future: In our first sector deep dive feature, we look at the history and research of the endocannabinoid system and why more and more of the medical and scientific community believe that cannabis holds a lot of promise as a better alternative to the treatments patients have available to them today. More importantly, learn more about the innovative companies leading in this space.

Expert Interviews: We wanted to serve as a platform for leading voices in the cannabis market to provide their perspectives and to encourage dialogue about the industry. Here’s who we heard from this week

Video Exclusives:

Sector Research: Did you know that the cannabis biotech/pharma market could reach over $20 billion within the next five years? In this report, Viridian Capital Advisors lays out their research on the trends and opportunities to play this potential boom.

Names to Know in the Biotech & Pharma Cannabis Space

  • GW Pharmaceuticals Plc (GWPH): GW Pharmaceuticals is focused on discovering, developing and commercializing novel therapeutics from its proprietary cannabinoid product platform in a broad range of disease areas. GW commercialized the world's first plant-derived cannabinoid prescription drug, Sativex(R), which is approved for the treatment of spasticity due to multiple sclerosis in 27 countries outside the United States. GW is advancing an orphan drug program in the field of childhood epilepsy with a focus on Epidiolex(R), which is in Phase 3 clinical development for the treatment of Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and which is also expected to enter Phase 3 clinical trials in the treatment of Tuberous Sclerosis Complex.
  • Insys Therapeutics, Inc. (INSY): Insys Therapeutics is a specialty pharmaceutical company that develops and commercializes innovative drugs and novel drug delivery systems of therapeutic molecules that improve the quality of life of patients. Using proprietary sublingual spray technology and capabilities to develop pharmaceutical cannabinoids, Insys addresses the clinical shortcomings of existing commercial products. Insys currently markets one product, Subsys® (fentanyl sublingual spray).
  • Zynerba Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ZYNE): Zynerba Pharmaceuticals (ZYNE) is a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing proprietary next-generation synthetic cannabinoid therapeutics formulated for transdermal delivery. Zynerba is developing therapeutic candidates based on proprietary transdermal technologies that, if successfully developed, may allow sustained, consistent and controlled delivery of therapeutic levels of two cannabinoids: cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive cannabinoid, and THC.
  • Nemus Bioscience, Inc. (NMUS): Nemus Bioscience is a biopharmaceutical company, headquartered in Costa Mesa, California, focused on the discovery, development, and commercialization of cannabis-based therapeutics for significant unmet medical needs in global markets. Utilizing certain proprietary technology licensed from the University of Mississippi, NEMUS is working to develop novel ways to deliver cannabis-based drugs for specific indications, with the aim of optimizing the clinical effects of such drugs, while limiting the potential adverse events. NEMUS's strategy will explore the use of natural and synthetic compounds, alone or in combination.
  • InMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (IN:CNX) (IMLFF): InMed is a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company that specializes in developing novel therapies through the research and development into the extensive pharmacology of cannabinoids coupled with innovative drug delivery systems. InMed's proprietary platform technology, product pipeline and accelerated development pathway are the fundamental value drivers of the company.
  • PharmaCan Capital: PharmaCan Capital Corp. is a company in the business of investing in companies either licensed, or actively seeking a license, to produce medical marijuana pursuant to Canada’s Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (“MMPR”). PharmaCan has investments in three of the fifteen companies that are listed on Health Canada’s website as licensed to produce and sell medical marijuana as well as another two of the eight companies that are listed on Health Canada’s website as licensed to produce medical marijuana.

Week Three Preview: Cultivation & Retail Market Opportunity in Cannabis

Our week three coverage of the cannabis market is sure to be a doozy. While the biotech/pharma group is incredibly compelling in its own right, we’re now getting into radically game-changing trends that could potentially affect the everyday lives of the population in North America, and eventually around the world. The legalization of marijuana for recreational use is expanding at an increasingly rapid pace on state-by-state basis. This is creating enormous opportunities for young businesses to become industry powerhouses of the future with a variety of novel approaches. Be sure to come back next week as we dive in.

You can read more from our special program The Future of Cannabis here. To find out why and Viridian Capital Advisors launched this program, be sure to read What is The Future of Cannabis? This program was made possible by the support of our sponsors.Click here for a full list of our sponsors.

DISCLOSURE: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, and do not represent the views of Readers should not consider statements made by the author as formal recommendations and should consult their financial advisor before making any investment decisions. To read our full disclosure, please go to:


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