Medical Marijuana increased GW Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:GWPH) by 10.5% in November 2015. The reason for this increase is because GW Pharmaceuticals is ahead of data for its new trial evaluations of Epidiolex. Epidiolex is its new THC based drug for the treatment of epilepsy. Epidiolex is an investigational drug and has not been approved for use by the FDA or any other national regulatory agency yet. Although, the FDA has granted orphan designation for Epidiolex.
GW Pharmaceuticals is expected to release data from ongoing late-stage trials in these indications in Q1. If those results are positive, then its drug, Epidiolex, may offer newfound hope to thousands of patients; earlier this year, the company reported that patients participating in a non-placebo controlled study experienced 52% fewer seizures when taking Epidiolex for 12 weeks.
A 2015 Recap On GWPH
GWPH already has one THC drug, Sativex, on the European market as a treatment for multiple sclerosis muscle spasms. Sativex is approved in over 20 countries and the company has a highly promising pipeline of additional cannabinoid drug candidates in development. In September, the company reported disappointing results for its marijuana drug in the treatment of schizophrenia, and in October, GW Pharmaceuticals reported that all three of its marijuana studies involving Sativex for cancer pain had failed to outperform placebo.
GW Pharmaceuticals Into 2016
Research into this subject should be watched closely by investors, patients, and healthcare providers because if scientifically controlled studies confirm the benefits of marijuana, then it could prove to be a major advance in how we treat patients with epilepsy in the future. However, even if Epidiolex has positive efficacy in its trials, there’s no guarantee that GW Pharmaceuticals will be able to outpace competitors like Insys Therapeutics (NASDAQ:INSY), or take market share away from medical marijuana dispensaries that are already providing high-dose-CBD marijuana varieties to epilepsy patients.