PuraMed BioScience announced today that the company is moving forward with the development of first cannabinoid-based formulation that targets the mental health market by focusing on anxiety and depression.
"We believe that with the technologies we have available, PuraMed can utilize hemp-derived compounds to build safer, more effective, and faster-acting treatments for a number of mental health conditions," said Russ Mitchell, CEO of PuraMed BioScience.
In 2012, mental health was the second largest US drug class for spending. In 2011, anti-psychotics and antidepressants accounted $29.2 billion in US sales, with over 264 million prescriptions written for antidepressant medication.
However, studies show that 63 percent of people who take antidepressants experience at least one side effect and 30 to 45 percent of people fail to respond to antidepressant treatments.
"PuraMed's long history of building clinically effective herbal medicines truly sets us apart from the majority of other businesses entering the cannabis market," said Mitchell. "We believe we can be a leader in the development of a new generation of natural medicines that incorporate cannabinoids, which can deliver a superior level of efficacy without the severe side effects associated with current prescription drugs.
"We looked at the mental health aspect of development due to our migraine initiative with veterans who are also suffering with the effects of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)," said Mitchell.
"Most common treatments for PTSD preclude use of commonly prescribed migraine treatments. It's a major problem for our active-duty military as well as our veterans. Movement into development of a mental health formulation aligns with our efforts to provide our service men and women with safer and more effective options which can enhance their quality of life." Due to the lack of new research on new antidepressant medications and anxiolytics, we believe there is a strong need for advancement in this category. The process of formulation and prototype development is underway.