Australian scientists are developing medical cannabis for your pets

Australians spend over $12 billion a year on looking after our pets, with vet fees being of the biggest expenses. Sadly, medication for our fluffy friends can also have awful side effects, such as nausea, loss of appetite, depression and internal bleeding.

That's where animal-focused pharmaceutical CannPal is hoping to change things. Working with the CSIRO under its Kick-start program, the company is researching ways to avoid these negative effects with medicinal cannabis.

The CannPal website talks about the science behind the research, stating that all mammals have biological and neurological systems that can receive and process nutritional cannabinoids.


'This is just nonsense,' experts push back against south Australia's proposed crackdown on cannabis

South Australia - which was the first Australian state to decriminalize cannabis possession back in 1987 - is looking to drastically increase the maximum fines people can receive if caught with cannabis, writes Calvin Hughes. The push comes straight from South Australia's Attorney General Vickie Chapman, who is looking to toughen up the state's drug laws after a 2012 murder was committed by a young man who had consumed cannabis.


Cann Group to build Australia's largest medicinal cannabis operation

Listed medicinal cannabis company Cann Group (ASX: CAN) has signed an agreement to build Australia's largest state-of-the-art medicinal cannabis operation.

The cannabis cultivation facility will see Cann Group investing $100 million in the 37,000 square meter facility in the Melbourne Airport precinct.

Australia Pacific Airports Melbourne (APAM) will undertake the primary build of the site which is being designed by Aurora Larssen Projects, a specialist greenhouse engineering consultancy group that provides technical consulting to the greenhouse industry worldwide.

Cann will complete the fit-out and technology deployment required at the facility that, when completed, will employ 170 staff.


Australia's first medicinal cannabis clinic set to open

The first of 10 medical cannabis clinics to be launched in Melbourne will open later this year with approval from the state and federal government. 

New legislation allows doctors to prescribe cannabis treatments which will be available to adults and children, Herald Sun reported. 

CannaLife founder Helen Lyon predicts the number of patients, who will be approved to legally use medical marijuana, is expected to grow significantly with the opening of the clinic in 2016. 


Australian brand launches first Japanese medicinal cannabis campaign

Australian medicinal cannabis company Elixinol has launched Japan’s first campaign advertising their products following a long-fought battle with regulators.

The ASX listed company has become the first to gain approval for a billboard advertising cannabidiol hemp oil – commonly known as CBD – in the country where medical marijuana has faced a fierce backlash by lawmakers.

Although CBD was legalised in November 2016, brands have so far struggled to gain approval to market their products, Elixinol Japan’s boss said in a statement.


Australia: Northern Territory to green-light industrial hemp industry as hopes for medical marijuana continue

The Northern Territory Government is set to green-light the industrial hemp industry, and moves are afoot to commercially cultivate medical marijuana.

Draft legislation to legalise the growing of industrial hemp has gone to Cabinet, a Government spokesperson said, with new laws that would bring the Territory into line with other Australian states expected to pass by the end of the year.

A trial crop in Katherine has proven successful, with the region's climate conditions expected to give the NT a "big commercial advantage".

"Following a successful department trial, the Territory Labor Government believes there is serious potential to grow industrial hemp as a new job-creating industry," a spokesperson said.


Frequent cannabis use does not damage brain structure, says new research

The authors say previous studies failed to differentiate between brain damage caused by nicotine, alcohol, or other drugs.

In 2014, a troubling research study suggested that frequent cannabis use was associated with changes in the size and shape of parts of the brain associated with emotion and motivation.

The grave conclusion of the study inspired other researchers to investigate the accuracy of these claims, with scientists now finding that that such brain changes were most likely caused by the use of alcohol, nicotine, or other drugs.


Australian clinical trial set to study cannabis as insomnia treatment

A team of researchers from the University of Western Australia is set to embark on a world-first human clinical trial specifically examining the effects of medicinal cannabis on subjects suffering from chronic insomnia.

The trial will be led by the university's Center for Sleep Science and run in conjunction with Australian medical research and development company Zelda Therapeutics.

Trial participants will be administered medicinal cannabinoid oil under the tongue one hour before going to bed, every night for two weeks. A placebo group will be also administered an inactive oil for two weeks before the groups switch to take the opposite preparation.


Aurora stalks Cann-do company

Australia's biggest medicinal cannabis company, Cann Group, is believed to be in the crosshairs of its largest shareholder.

Street Talk understands Canada's Aurora Cannabis Inc – that country's second largest cannabis company with a $C4.3 billion market capitalisation - is considering a formal approach to Cann Group's board about a takeover. Sources suggested there had been informal engagement between the two parties. 

Aurora's interest is believed to be pegged at about $4.50 a share, which would value Cann Group at about $500 million. 

The company's shares last closed at $2.99, but hit a record high just above $4 in January.


Canopy Growth launches spectrum Australia with support from the Victoria State government

Canopy Growth Corporation (TSX: WEED) ("Canopy Growth" or the "Company") is pleased to join the Victoria State Government in announcing the launch of the newest member of the Canopy Growth family, Spectrum Cannabis Australia ("Spectrum" or "Spectrum Australia").

Minister for Agriculture, the Hon. Jaala Pulford, alongside Ben Quirin, Managing Director of Spectrum Australia, announced the Company will invest up to $16 millionAUD (~$16 million CAD) in the State of Victoria over the next four years to establish Spectrum's Asia-Pacific (APAC) headquarters and research and development facility.


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