Tetra Bio-Pharma, a specialist in cannabinoid-based drug development and discovery, announced the launch of a medical cannabis oil programme, aiming to target the lucrative cannabis oil market and strengthen its plans to generate revenue from the medical cannabis market
Last year Tetra launched several drug development programmes to commercialise cannabis-based prescription drugs making it one of the world leaders in cannabinoid pharmaceuticals.
Tetra's vision is to develop an evidence-based approach similar to that of any other prescription drug, thereby allowing physicians and pharmacists to prescribe and dispense these medicines to patients in need.
Despite the growing popularity of cannabis oils, physicians and pharmacists across Canada are hesitant to support the use of these products because of the lack of data supporting its medical use; even though healthcare professionals have to offer the best available care to patients, they also need to ensure that the treatment dispensed by pharmacists does no harm.
Since 2015, the Canadian cannabis oil market has grown from below 600 kg in the first quarter (Jan-Mar) of 2016 to over 6000 kg in the same first quarter of 2017 and it is expected that this market will continue to show significant growth according to a July 26, 2017 report by Eight Capital.
Based on an estimated average sales price of $75-100 per 60 ml for cannabis oil, the 2017 global cannabis oil sales in Canada could exceed 30 million dollars.
Bernard Fortier CEO at Tetra, said: “Tetra is in a good position to penetrate this market. We have been preparing for months how to differentiate ourselves within this market while maintaining our corporate vision of an evidence-based approach. The cannabis oil market will be no different for Tetra.”
“The corporation is dedicated to providing evidence and supporting physicians and other healthcare professionals while making cannabis accessible to their patients. We are on target to initiate our sales strategy by March 2018 to carve out a solid position within the Canadian market.”
“We expect to generate revenues in the cannabis oil market in 2018 and we will grow these revenues as physicians become aware of our scientific approach and patient care programmes. Based on a conservative market penetration estimate, we are targeting to grow our share of the cannabis oil business to over 1 million in revenues by 2019.”
Furthermore, Tetra is announcing that it is supporting a post-marketing study (phase 4 clinical trial) of the use of cannabis oil in the treatment of chronic pain. This trial is driven by the medical experts of Santé Cannabis and will provide much needed safety and efficacy data in this patient population.
Tetra will be supporting Santé Cannabis in this important endeavour with its internal regulatory and scientific team. Data generated by this study will help Tetra's medical team in educating physicians on the potential of cannabis oils to treat patients suffering from chronic pain.
Once completed, this trial will allow Tetra to penetrate even further into the cannabis oil market making it one of the key players as it continues to grow its share of this over 30-million-plus dollar market.
Tetra's scientific team is also supporting the sales strategy by initiating a safety and pharmacokinetic study in healthy volunteers (phase 1 clinical trial) to characterise the safe use of these cannabis oil medicines in humans. Combined with the study in patients suffering from chronic pain, Tetra will have a solid and credible position in the medical cannabis oil market.
Dr Chamberland, Tetra's Chief Scientific Officer said: “Physicians are concerned about the potential side effects and well-being of patients using cannabis oil. It is this type of data that continues to allow Tetra to differentiate itself in the medical cannabis market as we become leader in the field.”
“Over and over, physicians and pharmacists welcome the pharmaceutical approach used by Tetra as it is a proven model for bringing safe and efficacious therapies to patients. Patients are expecting their healthcare professionals to treat cannabis like a medicine and help ensure that they safely consume these products. This expectation from patients will soon be fulfilled by Tetra's strategic approach to patient care.”
From a business point of view, these studies are part of the sales and marketing strategy required to effectively penetrate a physician-pharmacist product market.
The outcome of these studies will also support Tetra's overall drug development strategy and it is expected that this will allow Tetra to reduce the overall time-to-market for a number of its cannabis-based prescription drugs. The company will also use this data to create novel new products that will allow Tetra to further increase its revenues in the cannabis oil market.