Tags Posts tagged with "GWPH"

GWPH

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A great deal of progress is being made on learning how marijuana’s chemical cannabinoids can be used as medicine, and among the most interesting of these marijuana compounds is cannabidiol their wise known as CBD. It’s one of at least 113 active cannabinoids found in marijuana, it’s not responsible for marijuana’s psychoactive effect, and it accounts for about 40% of the marijuana plant’s extract.

At the forefront of research into CBD’s use as a medicine is GW Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: GWPH), a U.K. drug developer that currently markets a tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-derived drug in Europe for the treatment of muscle spasms in multiple sclerosis patients.

Is CBD The True Medical Catalyst Of Marijuana?

GW Pharmaceuticals recorded data from three separate scientifically controlled tests this past year identifying that its purified CBD, Epidiolex, reduces seizures by about 40% in patients with rare forms of childhood-onset epilepsy, including Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.

GW Pharmaceuticals’ findings back up anecdotal evidence that CBD heavy marijuana strains and oils provide relief to epilepsy patients. Perhaps the most well known of these high CBD strains is Charlotte’s Web, which has extremely low THC content (0.3%), and was named after the childhood epilepsy patient it was created to help.

In states that have passed medical marijuana legislation, growing evidence of cannabidiol’s efficacy in epilepsy patients is leading to greater availability at marijuana dispensaries. At last count, 28 states have passed medical marijuana laws, and 16 states have passed laws allowing the prescription of CBD oil.

Epidiolex isn’t commercially available yet, but it could be within a year. GW Pharmaceuticals hopes to file for Food and Drug Administration approval of Epidiolex soon, and an official decision would come within 10 months of that filing.

If Epidiolex becomes victorious in getting a regulatory green light, it will provide advantages to doctors and patients over CBD heavy marijuana strains and oils. While Epidiolex has been scientifically proven to work, the same rigorous proof isn’t available for CBD products like Charlotte’s Web that are sold at dispensaries. If Epidiolex is approved, it will be available nationally, regardless of each state’s laws, and that means it skirts risks associated with a federal crackdown on marijuana dispensaries by Washington. Furthermore, an FDA blessing would likely convince doctors who are otherwise hesitant to recommend medical marijuana to prescribe it.

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The marijuana market is growing faster than most would believe and that’s creating a lot of interest in owning marijuana stocks. However, those willing to invest their money need to choose what marijuana stocks to buy carefully.

If you have thoughts about what marijuana stocks could be top stocks in 2018, you may want to consider the catalysts ahead for GW Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: GWPH), Canopy Growth (TSX: WEED)(NASDAQOTH: TWMJF), and Insys Therapeutics (NASDAQ: INSY).

What Makes These Marijuana Companies Valuable?

Unlike marijuana companies that are selling medical marijuana at dispensaries in states with medical marijuana laws on the books, GW Pharmaceuticals is pursuing Food and Drug Administration approval of a marijuana-based drug for epilepsy, and a decision from the FDA could happen early in 2018.

The drug — Epidiolex — has already delivered impressive efficacy in late-stage clinical trials, and if the FDA gives it a blessing, Epidiolex can sidestep the risk that Washington, D.C., starts enforcing federal laws prohibiting marijuana sales in states that have legalized it.

The U.S. marijuana market is getting bigger as more states pass pro-pot legislation, but it faces risks because federal laws still schedule marijuana as a Class 1 drug.

Instead of risking the Trump administration’s crackdown of marijuana markets in America, it may be a better bet to look north of the border to Canada, where medical marijuana has been legal since 2001 and recreational marijuana could become legal soon.

The biggest marijuana stock in Canada is Canopy Growth, the well-funded marijuana producer behind the popular marijuana brand Tweed. Canopy Growth has over $100 million on its balance sheet, and it did $40 million in marijuana sales last fiscal year. It’s using its deep pockets and cash flow to boost grow capacity, acquire smaller competitors, and establish itself as the go-to online marketplace for legal weed when recreational marijuana gets the green light in Canada.

It’s been a rough go for Insys Therapeutics investors. The company’s been under scrutiny ever since former executives were arrested on charges of illegally marketing its opioid spray Subsys for off-label use. A revolving door in the C-suite and ongoing investigations have done little to help the company stay focused on launching its marijuana-based drug, Syndros, and developing cannabidiol drugs like Epidiolex for tough-to-treat epilepsy.

The challenges have sent shares reeling, but Insys Therapeutics has a new CEO, and he’s saying all the right things.

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The marijuana industry is growing at a rapid pace, and investors have surely taken notice. Much more marijuana stocks have witnessed their valuations increase substantially, or maybe run even higher, over the trailing 12-month period.

Stemming from a 2016 Gallup poll and an April 2017 CBS News poll, the percentage of those who were receptive to seeing recreational cannabis legalized nationally which has surged to a respective 60% and 61%, both all-time highs. By comparison, Gallup’s 1995 poll showed just 25% approval for such a play, while the CBS News poll was a full 21-percentage-points lower just six years ago. The public wants change at the federal level, and investors are trying to beat that change by purchasing marijuana stocks.

The sale of legal marijuana has also risen. Investment firm Cowen & Co. is looking for $50 billion in legal annual cannabis sales by 2026, while a more recent report from Marijuana Business Daily implies that legal U.S. sales could triple between 2017 and 2021, to more than $17 billion. You’d probably struggle to find such consistent growth in any other industry or sector.

Which marijuana stock could hit $1 billion in sales first?

Yet, there are dozens of marijuana stocks to choose from, and they’re clearly not all going to be winners. The top performers, assuming marijuana remains legal in select states and that it gains broader approval in Canada and Mexico, are probably going to be the pot-based businesses that can really ramp up revenue and turn a healthy profit.

If there is a significant bench mark out there for marijuana stocks, it’s the $1 billion sales mark. The first cannabis company to hit $1 billion in sales will likely validate the industry. But which marijuana stock has the best chance at being first to $1 billion in annual sales?

1. GW Pharmaceuticals
Considered the most sensible choice is cannabinoid-based drug developer GW Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: GWPH), which also happens to be the largest pot stock by a mile in terms of market cap.

What makes GW Pharmaceuticals so unique is its currently experimental cannabidiol therapy Epidiolex, which hit its primary endpoint in a pivotal phase 3 trials for two rare types of childhood-onset epilepsy. In both its Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome trials, Epidiolex led to a statistically significant reduction in seizure frequency compared to the placebo.

The success of these studies puts the company on track to get Epidiolex approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), though nothing is ever a guarantee when it comes to the FDA. Assuming some potential for label expansion, Epidiolex could very well hit $1 billion in peak annual sales, if not a tad higher.

2. Corbus Pharmaceuticals
Corbus Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: CRBP) is considerably more of a wildcard than GW Pharmaceuticals, but if one specific clinical trial goes its way, it could easily leap to $1 billion in annual sales.

Corbus’ pipeline consists of a solitary drug known as anabasum, which is a synthetic oral endocannabinoid-mimetic drug that binds to the CB2 receptors expressed on immune cells and fibroblasts. Its drug is being tested in four indications, but one stands out head and shoulders above the rest: cystic fibrosis (CF). There are few drugs to treat CF, and most that are FDA approved target a very specific mutation, making their impact limited within the CF community. Anabasum is believed to have a global anti-inflammatory effect, meaning it could be taken by most, or all, CF patients.

3. Canopy Growth Corp.
Another seemingly logical marijuana stock that could thrive is Canopy Growth Corp. (NASDAQOTH: TWMJF), a producer and retailer of medical cannabis products and oils in Canada. Medical weed has been legal in Canada since 2001.

Canopy Growth has been a busy bee of late on the acquisition front. It completed its acquisition of Mettrum Health earlier this year, and it acquired a 472,000 square foot facility that includes its current corporate headquarters.

Growth by acquisition gives the company immediate access to more medical marijuana patients and the ability to rapidly expand its growing capacity.

4. Aphria
One of Canopy Growth’s largest competitors in the Canadian medical marijuana producing and retail business is Aphria (NASDAQOTH: APHQF). Aphria has the distinction of being the most prominently profitable marijuana stock, with the company reporting five consecutive quarterly profits.

Unlike Canopy Growth, Aphria is doing things organically. It’s been funding expansions of its existing grow capacity, and is currently working on its most aggressive growth initiative to date, Phase IV.

5. Aurora Cannabis
And how can we forget Aurora Cannabis (NASDAQOTH: ACBFF), yet another of Canada’s medical cannabis producers and retailers. Aurora Cannabis has lagged its peers in recent profits due to its expansion-based spending.

Like Aphria, Aurora Cannabis is all about organic development. Aurora Cannabis has touted its Aurora Sky project, which will increase its cultivating capacity nearly ninefold, as the most technologically advanced and automated cannabis-grow facility in the world, when completed.

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A legal cannabis movement is sweeping the United States and currently, 29 states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana and eight states have legalized recreational marijuana.

Although recent studies have shown that cannabis has medical benefits, the DEA and FDA still have it classified as a Schedule I substance. The Schedule I category is reserved for substances that have the highest potential for abuse, that have no accepted medical use and even under medical supervision cannot be used safely.

Although researchers are beginning to learn about the medical benefits associated with cannabis, they have not even scratched the surface. The cannabis industry is the fastest growing industry in the world. After spending several years researching cannabis and developing products, companies are just beginning to realize the fruits of their efforts.

Biotech Beneficiaries

The biotech sector will be one of the greatest beneficiaries of the legal cannabis movement and we expect this market to see incremental growth over the next decade.

Cannabis continues to improve daily life for millions of people all over the globe and this multi-billion-dollar opportunity is still in its infancy. The biotech sector of the cannabis industry is comprised of some of the best capitalized and most mature public companies and we have identified five companies for investors to monitor.

IGC: A Stock to Watch After Coming Off its Highs

India Globalization Capital (IGC) is one of the few cannabis-focused companies that trade on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and earlier this month, the company entered a definitive license agreement with the University of South Florida (USF). Under the agreement, IGC is the exclusive licensee of the U.S. patent filing entitled, THC as a Potential Therapeutic Agent for Alzheimer’s Disease.

This is an important development and milestone for the company as it works toward the development of a potential cannabis-based blockbuster treatment for America’s most expensive disease, Alzheimer’s disease.

IGC received a muted reaction from the market and we see upside to current levels after this milestone. We are favorable on IGC’s recent updates as it has pivoted fully into the biotech cannabis sector and continue to monitor developments around the company’s cannabinoid-based therapies.

Insys Receives a Positive Response to Management Additions

Insys Therapeutics (INSY) continues to trade higher after the company announced the addition of four pharmaceutical industry veterans to its management team. These additions help remove some of the market’s concerns pertaining to the strength of its management team and we see further upside from current levels.

we view Insys as an acquisition candidate and expect to see the company acquired this year. In July 2016, INSY announced that the FDA approved Syndros, an orally administered liquid formulation of the pharmaceutical cannabinoid Dronabinol, a pharmaceutical version of THC. At the time of this announcement, INSY said that Syndros is awaiting scheduling by the DEA.

GW Pharma: An Industry Leader

GW Pharmaceuticals (GWPH) has come off its recent lows and the shares are trading near $105 after falling below $93 earlier this month. GW is an industry leader and the company has several catalysts occurring in the second half of this year.

GW is changing the landscape of the biotech industry and the company already sells a cannabis-derived treatment for multiple sclerosis is 27 countries. GW is a company that investors need to watch as it continues to execute on its pipeline and create value for shareholders.

Nemus Advances its THC Pro-Drug

Today, Nemus Bioscience (NMUS) announced that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) derived from NB1111, a proprietary pro-drug of THC, achieved significant tissue concentrations in multiple compartments of the eye that are correlated with the lowering of IOP in a normotensive ocular animal model.

The abstract, Intraocular pressure lowering efficacy of NB1111 in a normotensive rabbit model expands on previously reported data by showing that the product safely penetrated multiple ocular chambers and concentrated in key tissues that help regulate intraocular pressure.

Nemus and the University of Mississippi have also collaborated on developing an analogue of CBD into an eye drop formulation called NB2222. The company plans to submit an abstract to an upcoming scientific meeting to present data on the NB2222 program.

We are favorable on this development and view Nemus’ relationship with the University of Mississippi to be a unique and differentiating factor. The shares are trading at $0.28 and this is a company investors should watch.

Cara Surges 10% on Positive Data

Cara Therapeutics (CARA) rallied more than 10% yesterday after the company announced the completion of a pre-specified interim conditional power analysis of its adaptive Phase 3 trial of I.V. CR845. The trial will continue to test two doses of CR845 against a placebo in up to 450 patients undergoing abdominal surgery. The Independent Data Monitoring Committee (IDMC) reviewed available safety information and confirmed that both doses of CR845 were well tolerated with no significant changes in the monitored safety parameters.

The primary efficacy measure is the Change in Pain Intensity over the 24-hour postoperative period using the patient-reported Numeric Rating Scale score collected at pre-specified time points through 24 hours. Postoperative nausea and vomiting will be evaluated as a secondary efficacy measure.

Although CARA has not advanced any of its cannabis initiatives, we continue to monitor the shares closely. Although we do not consider CARA to be a cannabis biotech stock, we continue to monitor the shares due to the potential it has to enter the sector.

Authored By: Jason Spatafora

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The biotech sector will be one of the greatest beneficiaries of the global cannabis movement and is comprised of some of the most mature and best capitalized companies.

The Nasdaq was the worst performing exchange yesterday and biotech cannabis-focused firms traded lower on average. Although we continue to be bullish on this sub-sector of the cannabis industry, it is also the one that would be most impacted by a correction in the market.

This sector is comprised of some of most attractive long-term companies. We think recent weakness has created opportunity and we want to highlight five cannabis stocks every investor should be watching.

Insys Therapeutics (INSY) traded in a very volatile range after reporting its fourth quarter and full year financial results yesterday. Insys opened down almost 5% and the shares traded as low as $10.01 before finding support. INSY bounced off these lows and the shares ended the day up 2.2%. INSY is at $10.75 and Technical420 plans to average down and add to its position if the shares trade below $10. The shares are trading well below its average Wall Street price target (more than 60% upside to average price target). One of the main reasons why we are favorable on Insys is because we view the company as an acquisition candidate due to its valuable intellectual property and relatively cheap valuation.
Corbus Pharmaceuticals (CRBP) gave up all its gains from Monday and the shares are trading at $8.05 after a 2.4% move lower on weak volume. We continue to monitor CRBP from the sidelines after exiting our position within hours of entering. We are on the sidelines due to the misleading reports, the increased volatility, and the potential for the market to dip lower in the near term.
Cara Therapeutics (CARA) was under pressure yesterday and the shares are trading below the pricing of its recently announced financing. Technical420 remains favorable on Cara Therapeutics and see significant upside to current levels. The shares are trading at $17.92 after a 2.5% move lower and we plan to add to our position on continued weakness. Cara plans to use the proceeds from its $80 million raise to fund clinical and R&D activities, including the completion of the Phase 3 program in uremic pruritus, two Phase 3 trials in acute pain and a Phase 2b trial in osteoarthritis pain. We will keep you updated on how the shares trade today.
GW Pharmaceutical (GWPH) edged lower on light volume yesterday and the shares are currently trading below its 20 and 50-day moving average. GWPH has fallen 8% in the last month and we view the shares as an attractive long-term opportunity at current levels. GW has one of the deepest pipelines of products in advanced stages of FDA testing. The company also has the best Wall Street coverage and has received buy ratings from Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch, and Morgan Stanley. We view GW as an acquisition candidate and Goldman Sachs estimated a $390 a share acquisition price if that was to occur. From the filing of a New Drug Application to multiple Phase 3 Clinical trials, GW Pharma is an event-driven story that has many potential catalysts. We plan to hold and add to our position on continued weakness.
Zynerba Pharmaceuticals (ZYNE) continues to be one of the most attractive cannabis biotech investment opportunities due to the relatively cheap valuation, its high-quality pipeline of products, the number of upcoming catalysts, and its favorable and improving Wall Street coverage. In late March, H.C. Wainwright raised Zynerba’s price target to $30 from $22. The average price target on shares of Zynerba is north of $30 and offers more than 50% upside to current levels.

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Cannabis stocks have come down from their recent highs and this has raised some concerns after we ended 2016 on a high note.

2016 was a great year for the cannabis industry and we expect 2017 to build off this success. From Canada to Australia, the United States to Germany, the global cannabis industry continued to expand and the stage is set for growth for years to come.

The recent weakness has led to an influx of questions pertaining to the top cannabis investment opportunities and we want to highlight 7 cannabis stocks that investors should watch during 2017.

Seven Cannabis Stocks to Watch

1. GW Pharmaceuticals (GWPH): We continue to view GWPH as the top long-term biotech investment levered to the cannabis industry and we expect to see a VERY STRONG second half of the year. We are favorable on the long-term outlook due to its deep pipeline of products in advanced stages of clinical trials, its strong balance sheet, and its favorable Wall Street coverage.

2. Zynerba Pharma (ZYNE): We consider the company to be one of the most undervalued biotech investment opportunities. Zynerba is focused on developing treatments from synthetic cannabis and the average Wall Street price target offers almost 100% upside to current levels.

3. Canopy Growth (WEED.TO) (TWMJF) continues to be the leader in the Canadian medical cannabis industry and view the company as one the best opportunities within the cannabis industry. The shares have been trending lower and we view this weakness as a great opportunity to buy into a high-quality cannabis producer with a global footprint.

4. Emblem Corp. (EMC.V) (EMMBF) has been trending so far this year and the shares are down 30% during this time. Despite the recent weakness, we are bullish on the company’s opportunity due to its attractive business model, its proven management team, its sound financial structure, its strong balance sheet, and its leverage to growth trends in the cannabis sector

5. After securing a potentially highly lucrative licensing contract, InMed Pharmaceuticals, (IN.CN) (IMLFF) looks even better positioned to benefit for positive tailwinds facing the global cannabis industry. InMed is a pre-clinical biopharmaceutical company that is focused on the research and development of novel and cannabinoid-based therapies in Canada. The company has a strong pipeline of products in various stages of FDA testing and is developing various drugs for diseases, such as ocular, pain and inflammation.

6. VPR Brands, LP, (VPRB) is a stock to watch as it is levered to several growth trends within the global cannabis industry. The shares have pulled back and we see upside to current levels. In 2016, VPR acquired Vapor Corp’s wholesale operations and assets for a significant discount and recent announcements show that VPR has executed on and monetized this acquisition. We view this as a very attractive growth story that is undervalued by the street.

7. Vinergy (VIN.CN) (VNNYF) has been one of the most interesting and exciting stories to watch over the last six months and we see significant upside to current levels. The shares have fallen more than 33% in the last month and we find them to be attractive due to the number of catalysts for growth over the next year.

Disclaimer:
Pursuant to an agreement between MAPH and InMedPharmaceuticals., we were hired for a period beginning February 24 2017 and ending April 24, 2017 to publicly disseminate information about (IMLFF) including on the Website and other media including Facebook and Twitter. We are being paid $40,000 (CASH) for and were paid “250,000” shares of restricted common shares of InMed Pharmaceuticals.Pursuant to an agreement between MAPH and VPRBrands, we were hired for a period of 90 days to publicly disseminate information about (VPRB) including on the Website and other media including Facebook and Twitter. We are being paid $45,000 (CASH) for or were paid “ZERO” shares of unrestricted or restricted common shares. We own zero shares of (VPRB) which we purchased in the open market. Pursuant to an agreement between MAPH and a non-affiliate third party, we were hired for a period of 2 months to publicly disseminate information about (VNNYF) including on the Website and other media including Facebook and Twitter. We are being paid $120,000 (CASH) for or “ZERO” shares of restricted or unrestricted common shares. We own zero shares of (VNNYF) which we purchased in the open market. We may buy or sell additional shares of (IMLFF, VPRB, VNNYF) in the open market at any time, including before, during or after the Website and Information, provide public dissemination of favorable Information.

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Countries across the globe continue to legalize cannabis and it is only a matter of time until the U.S. gets on the bandwagon.

The biotech sector will be one of the greatest beneficiaries of legal cannabis and companies focused on this opportunity have outperformed the market over the last quarter.

A Stock to Watch

Today, Vinergy Resources (VIN: CSE) (VNNYF: OTCQB) reported a breakthrough while conducting R&D on its oral cannabinoid (CBD) delivery strips and controlled time release capsule technology.

We highlighted VIN.CN as a stock to watch after its acquisition of MJ Biopharma in mid-December and the market responded very favorably to this all-stock purchase. MJ Biopharma is a private cannabis technology company focused on manufacturing breath strips, time release capsules, extract oils, food products such as infused juices, teas, coffee and extract drinks, as well as the development of pharmaceutical grade delivery systems.

MJ Biopharma is also focused on licensing and partnering on the development of technologies and products for the medical and recreational cannabis market in Canada and abroad. The company said that the novel approach that is under development will become the basis for new products where water or saliva is the catalyst used to activate the carrier for delivery and absorption of CBD in the body.

Opportunity to Create a New Product Category

This unique approach forms the basis for a fundamentally new technology and possible new product category. The technology is called BURST due to the speed at which it can enhance the body’s absorption of various ingredients. The BURST system is built on natural botanical polymers delivering specialty processed high purity cannabinoids.

MJBiopharma CEO Kent Deuters said, “This is a great breakthrough for us and the product line we have planned. The technology can also be utilized in our time release capsules which of course will have a slower absorption rate. We think time release capsules are extremely important as they help bridge the gap in terms of familiarity with many patients who want to switch from synthetic drugs to a natural drug as a way to reduce side effects, reduce drug costs and just feel better all around.”

Two Top Picks

Two other biotech cannabis stocks we are watching are Zynerba Pharmaceuticals (ZYNE) and GW Pharmaceuticals (GWPH).

GWPH has rallied off its recent lows and we remain bullish on the company due to its deep pipeline of pharmaceutical products that are in advanced stages of FDA testing. The company has several catalysts in the back half of 2017 and we see significant upside to current levels.

ZYNE continues to remain one of our top picks in the cannabis sector as we see significant upside to current levels. The average Wall Street price target on ZYNE is north of $30 and we view the company as an acquisition candidate for any biotech company interested in the cannabis industry.

We continue to view GWPH as one of the top investment opportunities within the cannabis sector as it is the only Nasdaq traded company focused on developing treatments from the actual cannabis plant.

Unlike Zynerba Pharmaceuticals (ZYNE) which develop its treatments from synthetic cannabis, GWPH uses the actual cannabis plant and the benefits of this are reflected in its continued success in FDA trials.

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Cannabis biotech bellwether, GW Pharmaceuticals (GWPH) announced positive top-line results from an exploratory Phase 2 placebo-controlled clinical study of a proprietary combination of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) in 21 patients with recurrent glioblastoma multiforme (GBM).

Concurrent with this announcement, the company also reported first quarter financial results for the period that ended on December 31st. GW Pharma continues to be a leader within the cannabis biotech sector and today’s announcement further solidify its position at the top.

About the Study

GBM is a particularly aggressive brain tumor, with a poor prognosis. GW Pharma was granted the Orphan Drug Designation from the FDA and the EMA for THC:CBD in the treatment of glioma.

The study showed that patients with documented recurrent GBM treated with THC:CBD had an 83% one-year survival rate compared with 53% for patients taking the placebo. The median survival for the THC:CBD group was greater than 550 days compared with 369 days in the placebo group.

The treatment was generally well tolerated with the patients in both groups. The study reported that emergent adverse events caused two patients in each group to discontinue the study. The most common adverse events reported were vomiting and dizziness.

From the Principal Investigator and the CEO

Professor Susan Short, PhD, Professor of Clinical Oncology and Neuro-Oncology at Leeds Institute of Cancer and Pathology at St James’s University Hospital and principal investigator of the study said, “The findings from this well-designed controlled study suggest that the addition of a combination of THC and CBD to patients on dose-intensive temozolomide produced relevant improvements in survival compared with placebo and this is a good signal of potential efficacy. Moreover, the cannabinoid medicine was generally well tolerated. These promising results are of particular interest as the pharmacology of the THC:CBD product appears to be distinct from existing oncology medications and may offer a unique and possibly synergistic option for future glioma treatment.”

2017 Outlook is Bright

Following the company’s earnings report, GW Pharma CEO Justin Gover said, “As we look forward to 2017, our primary focus is on completing the Epidiolex NDA, which we expect to submit to the FDA in the middle of this year. With three positive Phase 3 trials delivered in 2016, we remain confident in the prospects for Epidiolex’s approval and are accelerating our preparations for a highly successful launch. Beyond Epidiolex, the value of GW’s cannabinoid platform is further illustrated by promising new clinical data in the field of oncology and we continue to advance a number of additional clinical programs that will yield data this year.”

Trades on FDA Results, Not Earnings

Although GW Pharma reported a $19.3 million net loss on $2.5 million in revenue during the quarter, we remain very favorable on the company as biotech stocks tend to trade on FDA results, not earnings.

As of December 31st, the company reported to have $444.6 million in cash and cash equivalents. This should provide the company enough capital to execute on 2017 corporate initiatives.

We are favorable on this update and continue to view GWPH as one of the top investment opportunities for cannabis investors due to its deep pipeline of products that are in advanced stages of FDA testing. The company’s pipeline should create catalysts for years to come and this is a stock every investor should watch.

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Federal authorities charged another doctor with health-care fraud after receiving kickback from Insys Therapeutics (INSY) in return for prescribing one of its highly addictive opioid products. In mid-2015, we reported on this story and urged caution with shares of INSY due to our expectation for future legal headwinds. Our prediction proved to be accurate and INSY has fallen by more than 75% since we published this article.

Although we continue to forecast increased volatility with INSY in the near-term, we expect to see the company acquired by a larger biotech firm interested in the cannabis industry this year and see significant upside to current levels. The Pay for prescriptions fallout has created an opportunity for retail investors familiar with INSY and their drug therapies, namely Syndros which got FDA clearance in July of 2016.

Biotech Bets Continue to Pay Off

The biotech sector will be one of the greatest beneficiaries of legal cannabis and companies focused on this opportunity have outperformed the market over the last quarter.

We highlighted Vinergy Resources (VIN.CN) (VNNYF) as a stock to watch after its acquisition of MJ Biopharma in mid-December and the market responded very favorably to this all-stock purchase.

Yesterday, Vinergy announced that it signed a letter of intent to acquire up to 51% of a European multi-national plant breeding company that has $14+ million in annual sales and adjusted EBITDA $2+ million.

Becoming a Global Cannabis Opportunity

The target acquisition has been providing customers with commercial agriculture services for more than 25 years. During 2016, the company shipped 35+ million plant products to its customers and it continues to see incremental growth opportunities.

Through Vinergy, the company will be able to expand into the European cannabis industry. As part of the acquisition, Vinergy will now have access to 2,000+ hemp and cannabis strains with the ability to supply those strains to global customers.

The terms and conditions associated with the transaction were not disclosed but management expects the transaction to close in tranches with the first being it the first quarter of 2017.

A Stock to Watch

We continue to be bullish on Cara Therapeutics, Zynerba (ZYNE) and GWPH as possible acquisition targets by Pharma companies as Jason Spatafora (@Wolfofweedst) stated in a July 26th piece for Forbes. We will keep you updated on progress in this sector as usual…

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From the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), U.S. government agencies continue to change its stance pertaining to medical cannabis.

Last year, the NCI updated its website to include various studies that reveal how cannabis may inhibit tumor growth by killing cells. The NIDA revised their April 2015 publication to say that marijuana can kill certain cancer cells and reduce the size of others.

Countries across the globe continue to legalize cannabis and it is only a matter of time until the U.S. gets on the bandwagon. Although the market continues to keep its eyes on the U.S. cannabis industry, its neighbors to the north continue to be the global cannabis leader.

Biotech Bets

The biotech sector will be one of the greatest beneficiaries of legal cannabis and companies focused on this opportunity have outperformed the market over the last quarter.

We highlighted Vinergy Resources (VIN.CN) as a stock to watch after its acquisition of MJ Biopharma in mid-December and the market responded very favorably to this all-stock purchase.  At the time of this announcement, Vinergy also announced a non-brokered private placement offering of up to 10,000,000 units at $0.20 per unit.

MJ Biopharma is a private cannabis technology company based out of British Columbia that is currently focused on manufacturing breath strips, time release capsules, extract oils, food products such as infused juices, teas, coffee and extract drinks, as well as the development of pharmaceutical grade delivery systems. The company is also focused on licensing and partnering on the development of technologies and products for the medical and recreational cannabis market in Canada and abroad.

Vinergy’s market sentiment has improved significantly following the acquisition and investors were able to acquire stock at a more than 50% discount to the current price through the private placement. The offering generated incredible interest and is very oversubscribed. Investors should keep an eye on Vinergy as we expect to see the company build off of this momentum.

An Agreement Based on Success

One of the reasons why we were favorable on the aquisiton of MJ BioPharma was due to the milestone-based compensation strucutre. Vinergy issued 5 million shares to MJ BioPharma shareholders and can issue up 3.75 million more shares based on the completion of certain milestones.

  • The company will issue an additional 2.75 million shares upon the commercialization of MJ BioPharma’s strip technology.
  • One million shares will be issued when each of two alternative selected extractions/products are ready for commercialization.

Banking on Biotech

Although we continue to expect the biotech sector to benefit the legal cannabis movement, we are watching how these companies are impacted by a new White House administration.

The biotech sub-sector of the cannabis industry is comprised of some of the most mature cannabis businesses. We continue to view these companies as some of the most attractive cannabis investments and want to discuss our view of these companies at their current levels.

GW Pharmaceuticals (GWPH) has rallied off its recent lows and we remain bullish on the company due to its deep pipeline of pharmaceutical products that are in advanced stages of FDA testing. The company has a number of catalysts in the back half of 2017 and we see significant upside to current levels.

Zynerba Pharmaceuticals (ZYNE) continues to remain one of our top picks in the cannabis sector as we see significant upside to current levels. The average Wall Street price target on ZYNE is north of $30 and we view the company as an acquisition candidate for any biotech company interested in the cannabis industry.

Insys Therapeutics (INSY) has also rallied off its recent lows and the shares fell more than 60% during 2016. We believe that all of the legal concerns are priced into INSY and see significant upside to current levels. Like Zynerba, we view Insys as an acquisition candidate and view the company as a long-term investment opportunity.

 

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Important Investor Disclosures 

Disclosure.  Compensated Affiliate.  This report was authored by and is property of StoneBridge Partners LLC.  All information and data relied upon in drafting this report is publicly available.  The author believes and considers its sources to be reliable, but does not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information contained in this report.  Any and all information, data, analyses and opinions are provided for informational purposes only and is not intended, in any manner, as investment advice.  Any projections or other information generated by StoneBridge Partners LLC regarding the likelihood of various investment outcomes are hypothetical in nature, do not reflect actual investment results, and are not guarantees of future results.  None of the material contained in this report is intended as a solution or offer to sell or purchase a specific stock or any other investment.  This report is not directed to, or intended for distribution or use by, any person or entity that is a citizen, resident or located in any municipality, state, country or other jurisdiction where the distribution, publication, availability, or use of this report is contrary to any governing law or regulation.  The securities discussed in this report may not be eligible for purchase and/or sale in certain jurisdictions or by particular individuals.  It is important that you check any and all governing laws and/or regulations that may be applicable in your jurisdiction.  Investing in securities of issuers organized outside of the United States, including ADRs, entail certain risks.  The securities of non-United States issuers may not be registered with, nor be subject to the reporting requirements of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.  Please contact a Financial Advisor for professional advice regarding any and all securities investments.  This report is intended for informational purposes only.  StoneBridge Partners LLC’s officers, directors, employees, affiliates, or subsidiaries may have positions in securities covered by StoneBridge Partners LLC.  StoneBridge Partners LLC receives compensation from the company and/or has a position in the securities mentioned in this report

 

Authored by: Micheal Berger

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