During Health Canada’s consultations relating to the cannabis industry and related legislation, they heard many compelling personal stories of how cannabis is making a difference to Canadians living with serious health challenges such as cancer, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, arthritis and fibromyalgia. They also heard about the role that cannabis can play in pain management and palliative care, and the relief that cannabis, particularly strains with high levels of CBD and low levels of THC, offers to children with severe forms of epilepsy and how cannabis has enabled patients to limit or eliminate their use of powerful narcotic drugs such as opioids.
Algae Dynamics intends to undergo a significant rebranding exercise to ensure that it is able to communicate its emphasis on the application of cannabis. Beginning with a proposed name change to CanaQuest Medical Corp., our mission is to:
• Identify with the help of our research partners appropriate formulations
• Acquire the lowest cost dry cannabis from domestic and international suppliers who have adequate logistics and warehousing capabilities to satisfy our requirements; and
• Continue discussions we have already commenced with contract manufacturers who have experience in conducting human trials and commercializing research and development as well as managing supply and risk management including through good manufacturing practices (GMP).
We expect our formulations involving both THC and botanical oil extracts will treat mental health ailments and the advent of our formulations is expected to significantly distinguish our approach from other Licensed Producers who may not have strong relationships with the University research community which we believe we have cultivated over time through our business objectives. We believe our formulations may have significant potential applications in the treatment of anxiety, addiction, depression, schizophrenia, and post-traumatic stress disorder “PTSD” and will form a strong foundation to continue to seek other applications through our Sponsored Research Programs. Accordingly, we believe we have developed a strategy to maximize opportunities in an evolving industry that has international scope and opportunity, with Canadian talent through its universities providing a mechanism to make a significant difference in the lives of medical cannabis users.
Intellectual Property Protection
The Company is undertaking development & commercialization of cannabinoid therapeutic products from strains of cannabis to treat a variety of clinical indications. Through its relationship with Universities, the Company is collaborating to formulate proprietary solutions which significantly impact the effectiveness of cannabis compounds. In addition, we are looking to:
• Combine the benefits of cannabis and other botanicals;
• Enhance a highly effective suite of medicinal patented products; and
• Utilize formulations which increase absorption capacity.
We believe we have developed a competitive advantage relative to Licensed Producers who may have vertically integrated operations to produce medical applications for cannabis. In particular, we have shown progress in several key areas including:
• Clinical trial data using animal subjects performed by Dr. Laviolette, Western University, has shown positive results.
• Our focus is targeted to areas that can provide positive, measureable feedback including anxiety, addiction, depression, schizophrenia and PTSD.
• Our products are intended to balance THC with other botanical compounds to minimize the euphoric and related side effects.
• We expect further product formulations and uses as our Sponsored Research Programs continue.
• Focused studies by our research partners includes twelve years of cannabis compounding (THC, CBD)
• Talented management and sustainability is evident through continuous development and talent retention including seven PhDs and three interns through our Sponsored Research Programs.
• Our innovative approach to government funding, including the MITACS $400,000 research grant has built a reputable and collaborative approach between the private and public sector.
• Our scientific rather than simply “claims-based” approach provides reviewable clinical data that is attracting attention from leading pharmaceutical firms and producers.
• Our primary researcher at Western University, Ontario, Dr. Steve Laviolette, believes that the clinical implications and commercial potential for his formulations are highly significant and has concluded that “since cannabis is commonly prescribed for a host of ailments, including pain, nausea, glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, osteoarthritis, our formulation will again be hugely significant for the non-mental health patient sectors as well”.
Our strong and developing relationship with Western University positions us to execute on our business strategy and develop viable, useful products.
In particular, we believe researchers at Western are:
• Ahead of their field with over twelve years of cannabis compound (THC, CBD) research;
• Have a strong understanding of the application of THC and CBD compounds to address pain, anxiety, addiction, depression, schizophrenia and post-traumatic stress disorder “PTSD”;
• Equipped to realize the benefits of a novel proprietary formalizations they developed, and which are eligible for patents which the Company will secure through our research agreements;
• In a position to leverage their platform established for ongoing novel formulations and produce relevant clinical trial data with significant results.
In addition, the researchers at the University of Waterloo are exploring other areas that have shown positive results for the use of cannabis including:
• Colorectum, pancreas, breast and prostate cancer;
• Ongoing R & D – mitigation of the spread of cancerous tumors; and
• Combined application of natural botanicals, algae essential fatty acids, and cannabis oils.
Our focus on distribution is intended to position us to meet demand for our formulations which is expected to occur through agreements with Licensed Producers with formulation, packaging and distribution/export (GMP facilities) together with international distribution agreements and strategies to distribute product both domestically and abroad.
We are positioned to introduce products using both THC dominated formulations with other botanicals, including combinations with plant cannabinoids as well as CBD dominated formulations with other botanicals. We believe that a strategy of introducing a combination of compounds over time and in formulations that are correlated with observed benefits will allow us to penetrate and differentiate ourselves from competitors.
Licensed Producer Partnerships
We intend to pursue our business strategy through appropriate licensing arrangements with Licensed Producers. We believe our experience and focus on nutraceutical formulations in the past several years position us to execute this strategy through relationships we have formed and continue to develop.
To fully exploit our competitive advantage, we intend to:
• Finalize our agreements with Licensed Producers which house GMP facilities positioned to extract, formulate, package & sell our formulations.
• Continue discussions with International Licensed Distributors.
• Initiate animal and human trials to further support our claims.
• Secure supply of dry cannabis and pursue binding agreements to completion.
• Sign partnership agreements with LPs to produce and sell our products both domestically and internationally.
• Apply to Health Canada for our own Sales License under the Cannabis Act so we can also introduce product into the marketplace under our own name and using our methods.
• Build brand awareness for sales and export.
• Support our Sponsored Research Programs on-going product development, including through publication of scientific data.
• Submit Patent Product Applications.
Medical Cannabis – History and Benefits
Cannabis, also known as marijuana, is a family of plants called Cannabaceae. There are over 700 varieties of cannabis that have been described to date. Based on characteristics such as shape, colour, height, smell, etc., usually recognised by two Main types: Cannabis Sativa, which originated in the Western hemisphere and Cannabis Indica, which originated in Central and South Asia. Cannabis as a medicine can be found in the oldest Chinese tradition few thousand years ago, and indications showed different therapeutics use such as for malaria, rheumatic pain, constipation, disorders of reproductive system and many others.
Medical Cannabis refers to the use of cannabis and its constituent cannabinoids to treat disease or improve symptoms such as pain, muscle spasticity, nausea and other indications. Cannabinoids is a blanket term covering a family of complex chemicals, both natural and man-made, that bind with cannabinoid receptors (protein molecules on the surface of cells) and effect a wide number of responses. Cannabinoid receptors in the human body are part of a system called the Endocannabinoid System. This system produces chemicals called endocannabinoids, which also bind with cannabinoid receptors. Cannabinoid receptors are found in the brain and throughout the body. Scientists have found that cannabinoid receptors in the Endocannabinoid System are involved in a vast array of functions in our bodies, including helping to modulate brain and nerve activity (including memory and pain), energy metabolism, heart function, the immune system and even reproduction. While there are a large number of active cannabinoids found in cannabis, the two most common currently used for medical purposes are THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol).
Our proposed cannabis formulations and related nutraceutical products will generally utilize:
• a multiple combination of plant strains to target medical ailments at the neurological level;
• the use of cannabis extracted and concentrated cannabinoid oils which are known to provide targeted benefits together with botanical oils and Algae-omega3 essential fatty acids (DHA and EPA);
• cannabis extracted and separated terpenes (aroma, additional medicinal benefits); and
• cannabis “whole plant” oil – with natural concentrations of THC or CBD.
From research done in the field it has been concluded that THC acts on 2 types of cannabinoid receptors: CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are mainly found in the brain, peripheral nerves, and nervous system, whereas CB2 are found both in the neurons and immune cells. Evidence suggests that THC helps alleviate symptoms suffered both by AIDS patients and by cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, by increasing appetite and decreasing nausea. The other main ingredient is CBD, a non-psychoactive component of cannabis which accounts for more than 50% of the known therapeutic applications A range of clinical studies indicated that CBD appears to relieve convulsion, inflammation, anxiety, nausea and short-term memory loss.
While THC has a strong binding affinity for both CB1 and CB2 receptors, CBD has no particular binding affinity. Instead, many of the therapeutic benefits of CBD are created through indirect actions. These actions include activating TRPV1 Receptors. These receptors are involved in regulating pain, body temperature, and inflammation. These properties of THC make it more desirable than CBD as it directly and more effectively treats several of these ailments while CBD only has an indirect effect.
While THC is known to have a positive impact in stabilizing the release of neurotransmitters responsible for PTSD and pain, THC selectively targets molecular and neuropharmacological signaling pathways in both cortical and sub-cortical regions of the brain. In particular, the diminished functioning of GABAergic neurons in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) may lead to the loss of control of the PFC to regulate proper sub-cortical dopamine neurotransmission. The action of THC on CB1Rs can impair PFC-CB1R signaling and associated GABAergic functionality leading to dysregulation of the normal prefrontal process. This results in an increase in the extracellular glutamate levels and lower GABA which normally inhibits dopamine production. Understanding this process provides the potential for the development of safer cannabinoid-derived formulations using THC and/or the development of novel THC formulations containing neuroprotectants to mitigate these neuropsychiatric risks. Accordingly, our primary formulation combines THC with specified quantities of a specific botanical extract. While both are naturally occurring products, we believe that our formulation is sufficiently novel as it combines these compounds in specified quantities to create a different neurological result. The specific botanical extract is a unique amino acid and is known to cross the blood-brain barrier. In addition, it may regulate the extracellular glutamine concentration in the neurons and by doing so may properly regulate GABA levels and thus inhibit the release of dopamine. This same formulation may lead to THC replacing opioids: since the primary addictive effects of opioids are believed to be due to causing a long-term ‘switching on’ of overactive dopamine, our formula would be predicted to be superior to THC alone (which does cause overactive DA similar to opioids), in that our formula prevents this side effect of THC.
THC as a replacement for opioids: According to Dr. Steve Laviolette, “Since the primary addictive effects of opioids are believed to be due to causing a long-term ‘switching on’ of overactive dopamine, our formula would be predicted to be superior to THC alone (which does cause overactive DA similar to opioids), in that our formula prevents this side effect of THC.”
This is because THC is similar to Endocannabinoids that have a similar impact in structure to naturally occurring Endocannaboids which are naturally released by neurons to regulate the release of neurotransmitters.
The future of medical cannabis lies in medically accepted products for the management of neuropathic pain, hypertension, post-stroke neuroprotection, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, cancer, and other disorders. An example list of publicly traded companies that have entered or are intending to enter the medicinal cannabis markets are listed as follows:
• Aphria Inc (Canada Licensed Marijuana producer),
• Aurora Cannabis (producer of Cannabis and medicinal solutions following its acquisition of Cannabid Inc.), Bedrocan Cannabis Corp Canada (Pharmaceutical grade medicinal cannabis), Mettrum Health Corp Canada (Licensed producer of medical cannabis),
• OrganiGram Holdings Inc (Canada Licensed producer of organic medical marijuana),
• Tweed Marijuana Inc. (Canada Licensed producer of medical cannabis),
• Cannabis Science, Inc (USA OTC traded biotech company in Colorado),
• Medical Marijuana Inc USA (OTC traded business solutions and partnerships),
• GW Pharmaceuticals plc UK & USA (Owns a patented (MS) product – Sativex.).
We believe that while there is significant growth in this sector, our patented processes will continue to differentiate us and position us to succeed in this market.