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America is the Next Stop for Cannabis Epilepsy Medication, says British Biopharmaceutical Company

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In a win for patients suffering from the severe seizures associated with Dravet syndrome, GW Pharmaceuticals announced the success of the first cannabis-based medication to pass enough clinical trials at a significantly remarkable rate on Monday.

The news spread like wildfire across the newswire and has translated to GWPH stocks soaring to an astonishing 120 percent on Monday, according to CNBC.

An English-based company, GW Pharmaceuticals says they focus on discovering, developing, and commercializing novel therapeutics from its proprietary cannabinoid product platform. The first of four drugs they are putting to the test, Epidiolex has proven helpful in treating children with Dravet syndrome, a rare and debilitating type of epilepsy for which there is no treatments approved in the U.S.

“These data demonstrate that Epidiolex delivers clinically important reductions in seizure frequency together with an acceptable safety and tolerability profile, providing the epilepsy community with the prospect of an appropriately standardized and tested pharmaceutical formulation of cannabidiol being made available by prescription in the future,” said Orrin Devinsky, M.D., of New York University Langone Medical Center’s Comprehensive Epilepsy Center in a statement.

U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Cory Booker (D-NJ), and Rand Paul (R-KY) are supporters of de-scheduling the cannabis plant with their CARERs Act. Their bill would allow for federally-sponsored scientific research on cannabis’ medicinal properties. Currently, cannabis remains a schedule I drug with no accepted medical use, according to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).

Using her political platform, Senator Gillibrand supported the CARERs Act at the National Cannabis Industry Association’s (NCIA) NYC conference in September. I was at the conference at the New Yorker when she made history as the first sitting senator to give such a speech at a cannabis conference.

“In light of this positive data, we will now request a pre-NDA meeting with the FDA to discuss our proposed regulatory submission,” says Dr. Devinsky.

With this positive trial outcome, America could soon see the DEA backing off more and more as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) begin to regulate cannabis-derived medications.

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