Ron Dollete

FDA Approves Synthetic, Liquid THC Product

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a liquid, synthetic THC product for potential use treating chronic pain, nausea, seizures, Alzheimer’s and other conditions for which cannabis has proven to be an effective therapy, according to a report from Motherboard.

Syndros is a liquid form of Dronabinol, which has been around since the 1980s and is commonly known by its generic name Marinol. The new drug is listed by the FDA as Schedule III, meaning they consider it safe and free of addictive tendencies. Dronabindol is considered less effective than its natural counterpart due to its lacking other compounds found in cannabis. Because of its liquid form, Syndros could be easier for the body to absorb than Donabinol, which is delivered in a pill.

Dr. John Kapoor, CEO and President of Insys Therapeutics, creators of Syndros, said the company expects the drug to become “a significant long-term commercial opportunity.”

“We are very pleased to announce FDA approval of Syndros. We believe that Syndros will be an important new treatment option for patients suffering from the devastating effects of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, as well as those fighting anorexia associated with weight loss in AIDS,” Kapoor said in a press release announcing the approval.

Dr. William Eidelman, a Los Angeles-based medical marijuana physician, said that while he prescribes Marinol, many patients prefer traditional cannabis over the synthetics.

“Some people want the Marinol prescription for the reason that having the prescription gives it an additional level of legal acceptability under federal law,” he said in the report.

There are approximately 9,500 dronabinol prescriptions in the U.S., comparatively, according to a study by ProCon.org published May 3, there are 1,246,170 patients enrolled in U.S. medical marijuana programs.

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