GW Pharmaceuticals is a British pharmaceutics company known for its multiple sclerosis treatment product nabiximols (brand name, Sativex) which was the first natural cannabis plant derivative to gain market approval in any country. Another cannabis-based product, Epidiolex, was approved for treatment of epilepsy by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2018. It is a subsidiary of Jazz Pharmaceuticals.
|Justin Gover (CEO)|
|Products||Epidiolex (Epidyolex in Europe)|
|Revenue||$527 million (2020)|
|-$58 million (2020)|
|Total assets||$939 million (2020)|
|Total equity||$741 million (2020)|
Number of employees
|Footnotes / references|
GW Pharmaceuticals was founded in 1998 by doctors Geoffrey Guy and Brian Whittle. That year, they obtained a cultivation license from the United Kingdom Home Office and the MHRA, allowing the company to cultivate, possess and supply cannabis to conduct scientific research concerning medical cannabis.
Later in 1998, GW Pharmaceuticals entered into a contract with Hortapharm B.V., a cannabis research and development corporation based in Amsterdam. The company was founded by two expert horticulturists from California, Robert Connell Clarke and David Paul Watson, and grew and developed specialized strains of cannabis with permission from the Dutch government.
Nabiximols (trade name Sativex) is a botanical drug that is a cannabis extract, administered as a mouth spray; it was approved in the UK in 2010 as a treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS) patients to alleviate neuropathic pain, spasticity, overactive bladder, and other symptoms.
In 2015, GW Pharmaceutical initiated Phase 3 clinical trials of cannabidiol oral solution for treatment of two rare disease in children – Dravet syndrome and Lennox–Gastaut syndrome. In August 2015, GW received FDA Fast Track Development Program designation from the US Food and Drug Administration for use of the drug candidate to treat newborns with epilepsy.
The drug, under the brand name Epidiolex, was given US Food and Drug Administration approval in June 2018. It was subsequently given European EMA approval in September 2019 under the brand name Epidyolex.
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- "The Inheritance of Chemical Phenotype in Cannabis sativa L.(HortaPharm B.V., 1075 VS, Amsterdam, The Netherlands and Instituto Sperimentale per le Colture Industriali, 40128 Bologna, Italy)". Genetics.org. 1 January 2003.
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- Breen, Bill (1 February 2004). "The Cannabis Conundrum". Fast Company.
- Breen, Bill (1 February 2004). "Dr. Dope's Connection". Fast Company.
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- Drury, Tracey (6 June 2014). "Cuomo OKs limited medical marijuana trial in NYS". American City Business Journals.
- "Jazz Pharmaceuticals Completes Acquisition of GW Pharmaceuticals plc" (Press release). PR Newswire. 5 May 2021.
- Sharrow, Ryan (5 May 2021). "Jazz Pharmaceuticals shares rise on $7.2B acquisition of cannabis-based drugmaker". American City Business Journals.
- "The man who secretly (and legally) grows 20 tonnes of cannabis a year". The Guardian. 17 April 2011.
- "Cannabinoid liquid formulations for mucosal amdinistration". Google Patents.
- "GW Pharmaceuticals regains exclusive commercialisation rights to Sativex® (nabiximols) in the UK from Bayer" (Press release). GW Pharmaceuticals. 2 March 2020.
- Medical Cannabis Strains – Geoffrey Guy, MD (GW Pharmaceuticals, UK (Conference). 23 February 2010 – via YouTube.
- Ward, Andrew (9 January 2014). "GW raises nearly $90m to develop childhood epilepsy treatment". Financial Times.
- Butticè, Claudio (9 December 2015). "Therapeutic Cannabis for children – a possible new treatment for epilepsy". Meds News.
- "GW Pharmaceuticals Receives FDA Fast Track and EMA Orphan Designations for Intravenous Cannabidiol in the Treatment of Neonatal Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (NHIE)" (Press release). GlobeNewswire. 6 August 2015.
- "FDA approves country's first medicine made from marijuana". STAT. 25 June 2018.
- Kollewe, Julia (25 June 2018). "UK epilepsy drug to become first cannabis-based medicine in US". The Guardian.
- "Epidyolex". European Medicines Agency.
- "Medical cannabis product approved for epilepsy". BBC News. 23 September 2019.