HempMeds® Brasil, a subsidiary of Medical Marijuana, Inc. (MJNA) has been authorized by the Brazilian government to import its flagship cannabidiol (CBD) hemp oil product, Real Scientific Hemp OilTM (RSHOTM) for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.
Brazil’s National Health Surveillance Agency ANVISA has allowed CBD treatments for any medical condition, provided it’s prescribed by a doctor, since 2015. HempMeds® Brasil was the first company to be given legal permission to import medicinal cannabis products, which are subsidized by the Brazilian government under its health care system.
With three hemp CBD products approved for importation as a prescription medication, the Company to date has had doctor prescriptions for epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, cancer, autism, multiple sclerosis and chronic pain. This is the first time, however, that ANVISA has permitted the filing of a prescription for RSHOTM to treat the effects of Alzheimer’s disease.
“We once again commend the Brazilian government for responding to the humanitarian interests of its people by allowing them access to CBD hemp oil products that can treat the symptoms of conditions with no known cure or limited treatment options,” said Dr. Stuart Titus, Chief Executive Officer of Medical Marijuana, Inc.
The most common form of dementia, Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease where symptoms of memory and cognitive loss gradually worsen over time. Through what scientists believe is due to a combination of genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors, plaques and tangles build up in the brain, interfering with cell communication and the transport of nutrients to eventually cause cell demise.
Research findings indicate that CBD provides neuroprotective, anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory effects to help improve the survival rate of brain cells. A 2014 study published in Psychopharmacology found CBD to also have efficacy for encouraging the regeneration of brain cells for potentially reversing the cognitive deficits caused by Alzheimer’s.
The number of people worldwide suffering from dementia continues to increase, according to Alzheimer’s Disease International’s 2016 World Alzheimer report. The number of dementia cases is expected to balloon to 131.5 million by 2050, up from 46.8 million in 2015. Currently, there are more than 1 million people in Brazil that live with some form of dementia and with the country’s retired aging population on the rise, Investopedia projects the Alzheimer’s pharmaceutical market to be worth $34 billion in U.S. dollars by 2020.
“Treatment solutions for neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are desperately needed because of the difficulty in developing pharmaceuticals that can pass the blood-brain barrier, a specialized system of cells that allow nutrients in the brain while preventing harmful substances from passing through,” added Dr. Titus. “Cannabinoids like CBD, however are able to pass through the blood-brain barrier and affect cannabinoid receptors in the brain and recent studies have shown the efficacy of cannabis for Alzheimer’s disease.”
Last month, HempMeds® Brasil announced that it was partnering with leading global wholesale distributor Paragon HealthCare BR in further effort to secure the Brazilian market and expand access to CBD in the Brazil and across Latin America. The Company believes that there are numerous potential indications for usage of CBD and Paragon Health Care BR will also supply doctors and clinics prepared to conduct clinical study and research.