Cannabis has so far been relegated to the supplement and medical marijuana industries, with no FDA-approved drug (derived from the plant) available on the market. But a pharmaceutical company in Carlsbad is hoping to change that and it is about to quadruple in size.
The company, called Greenwich Biosciences Inc., is the U.S. subsidiary of GW Pharmaceuticals Plc, a company based in the United Kingdom.
The company is in late-stage clinical trials for an investigational medicine called Epidiolex, a treatment for seizures associated with a rare and severe form of childhood-onset epilepsy called Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet Syndrome.
Not all cannabis products contain the psychoactive ingredient THC (tetrahydrocannabidinol). There are 100 different molecules found in cannabis, with THC and cannabidiol (CBD) being the most well-known. CBD lacks the psychotropic effects of THC.
The company’s potential drug, Epidiolex, would be a CBD product, and it seems to be performing quite well in patients.
According to the company’s latest trial results, patients who took Epidiolex daily saw a 42 percent drop in monthly seizures compared with a reduction of 17 percent in patients taking a placebo.
Greenwich BioSciences recently quadrupled its office space size, moving into a 21,000-square-foot space in Carlsbad. The company, which employs 25 people in Carlsbad, plans to increase its local workforce to 100 people within the next 12-18 months. Greenwich’s new facility is set to hold about 125.
Although the parent company is based in the U.K., Greenwich is building out the company’s commercial leadership and operations teams, medical affairs, clinical, regulatory, and corporate affairs here in Carlsbad, according to the company.