Ver­i­tas Pharma be­gins can­cer re­search with Petchkovski

Stockwatch Daily - - CONSUMER GOODS - Dr. Lui Fran­ciosi re­ports

VER­I­TAS PHARMA Inc. has ini­ti­ated a can­cer re­search project to as­sess the ef­fects of sev­eral hu­man can­cer cell lines against se­lect cannabis strains, along with stan­dard clin­i­cal chemother­a­peu­tic drugs for com­par­i­son.

The com­pany has en­gaged Dr. Dmitri Petchkovski of Fi­brob­last Con­sult­ing in Van­cou­ver, Canada, to specif­i­cally in­ves­ti­gate lung, prostate, colon, breast and melanoma can­cer cell lines. Ver­i­tas’s re­search arm, Can­n­ev­ert Ther­a­peu­tics Ltd. (CTL) will pro­vide Dr. Petchkovski with the re­quired strains and over­see the im­ple­men­ta­tion of this project.

Ver­i­tas’s chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer, Dr. Lui Fran­ciosi, stated: “We are for­tu­nate to ob­tain Dr. Petchkovski’s ex­per­tise, who will now be­gin the im­por­tant task of sci­en­tif­i­cally de­ter­min­ing the po­ten­tial anti-can­cer prop­er­ties of Can­n­ev­ert’s cannabis strains. Can­cer is a dis­ease that has touched many peo­ple, and we want to pro­vide physi­cians and pa­tien ts with t he best-pos­si­ble sci­en­tific ev­i­dence when pre­scrib­ing cannabis as a treat­ment.”

Can­cer is a dis­ease that re­sults from changes in a group of nor­mal cells within the body where they be­gin to grow un­con­trol­lably to the point that a lump (known as a tu­mour) forms. If left un­treated, these tu­mours spread into the sur­round­ing nor­mal tis­sue or to other parts of the body.

Ac­cord­ing to Cana­dian Can­cer Statis­tics 2017, there is an es­ti­mated 206,200 new cases of can­cer and 80,800 deaths from can­cer that will oc­cur this year in Canada. Ap­prox­i­mately half of all new cases will be lung, col­orec­tal, breast and prostate can­cers. This will mean about one in two Cana­di­ans will de­velop can­cer in their life­times and one in four will die of the dis­ease. In the cur­rent med­i­cal lit­er­a­ture, there is in­suf­fi­cient sci­en­tific ev­i­dence that demon­strates cannabis or cannabi­noids can cut the risk of can­cer in peo­ple. Most can­cer sci­en­tists fo­cus on un­der­stand­ing how dif­fer­ent can­cers re­spond to spe­cific com­pounds in cannabis. Ver­i­tas’s ap­proach will be to quickly ac­cess more cannabis va­ri­eties, sys­tem­at­i­cally pro­file the ef­fects of the whole plant us­ing var­i­ous in vitro and in vivo an­i­mal mod­els of can­cer along­side stan­dard drugs, and con­duct a clin­i­cal trial in the fastest time pos­si­ble.

Ver­i­tas Pharma in­tends to seek patent pro­tec­tion for any dis­cov­er­ies made dur­ing this can­cer project. Ac­cord­ing to this year’s Zion Mar­ket Re­search re­port, the global can­cer drugs mar­ket was val­ued at ap­prox­i­mately $113-bil­lion (U.S.) in 2015, and it is ex­pected to rise to around $161-bil­lion (U.S.) by the end of 2021. Within the next two years, the com­pany would like to en­ter and ac­tively com­pete in this mar­ket with its sci­en­tif­i­cally based cannabis ther­a­pies.

Dr. Dmitri Petchkovski, the prin­ci­pal owner of Fi­brob­last Con­sult­ing, has over 30 years of aca­demic and R&D (re­search and devel­op­ment) ex­pe­ri­ence in cell bi­ol­ogy and medicine. He is an in­ter­na­tion­ally rec­og­nized ex­pert in the re­s­pi­ra­tory cell and molec­u­lar bi­ol­ogy as well as pul­monary fi­bro­sis.

Dr. Petchkovski re­ceived his MD de­gree at the Med­i­cal Univer­sity of Belarus, fol­lowed by a PhD in im­munol­ogy and im­munother­apy of can­cer and chronic ob­struc­tive pul­monary dis­ease (COPD). He has worked as a sci­en­tist at the In­ter­leukin biotech­nol­ogy con­sor­tium in Moscow, St. Peters­burg, Rus­sia, and Riga, Latvia, in the lab­o­ra­tory to eval­u­ate phar­ma­col­ogy of hu­man re­com­bi­nant in­ter­leukins. He com­pleted his post­doc­toral train­ing at the Med­i­cal Cen­tre of Freiburg Univer­sity (Ger­many) prior to join­ing the Univer­sity of Bri­tish Columbia and the Heart and Lung Re­search In­sti­tute in Van­cou­ver, Canada. He is the au­thor of more than 40 peer-re­viewed pub­li­ca­tions, pri­mar­ily in the im­munol­ogy, cell and molec­u­lar bi­ol­ogy, and bio­chem­istry, and he is a mem­ber of Amer­i­can Tho­racic So­ci­ety, Cana­dian Tho­racic So­ci­ety, Euro­pean Re­s­pi­ra­tory So­ci­ety, Amer­i­can So­ci­ety for Cell Bi­ol­ogy and In­ter­na­tional Cannabi­noid Re­search So­ci­ety. Dr. Petchkovski is the au­thor of sev­eral patents, and he has played a key role in R&D pro­grams, clin­i­cal devel­op­ment, and com­mer­cial­iza­tion of cannabi­noid ther­a­pies, pro­vid­ing ser­vices to lead­ing Cana­dian cannabis pharma com­pa­nies.

About Ver­i­tas Pharma Inc. Ver­i­tas Pharma is an emerg­ing-stage phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal and in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty devel­op­ment com­pany, which, through Can­n­ev­ert Ther­a­peu­tics, is ad­vanc­ing the science be­hind med­i­cal cannabis. It is the com­pany aim, through its in­vest­ment in CTL, to de­velop the most ef­fec­tive cannabis strains (cul­ti­vars) spe­cific to pain, nau­sea, epilepsy and PTSD (post­trau­matic stress dis­or­der), solv­ing the crit­i­cal need for clin­i­cal data to sup­port med­i­cal mar­i­juana claims.

Don­ald R Car­low, Luigi Fran­ciosi, David Charles Green­way, Yari Alexan­der Nieken, Linda Samp­son

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