Cannabis-Based Oral Spray Patented for Pain | The Fix
facebook twitter RSS
HOT TOPICS: Alcoholism  Addiction  AA  Cocaine  Heroin

Cannabis-Based Oral Spray Patented for Pain

GW Pharmaceuticals in Britain has been working on Sativex for a decade now as a medication for muscle spasms and cancer pain. But will the FDA let them market it here?


Cannabis mist melts in your mouth.
Photo via gwpharm

By Dirk Hanson


| Share

Have a spritz of this: Britain’s GW Pharmaceuticals has moved one step closer to offering Sativex, its cannabis-based spray product, in the U.S. after receiving patent approval  for use of Sativex in the treatment of cancer pain. Users spray the cannabis mist under their tongues for treatment. Sativex is currently seeking FDA approval to offer the cannabis spray in the U.S., and is in the midst of a series of clinical trials. The company already sells Sativex in Europe as a treatment for the spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis. Last month, GW Pharmaceuticals licensed drugmaker Novartis to sell Sativex in Australia, and in parts of Asia and Africa.

GW Pharmaceuticals has been working on Sativex for more than a decade now, as a medication for  multiple sclerosis patients, as well as for patients suffering from advanced cancers. Chairman Geoffrey Guy said that the company was “transitioning from a late-stage development company to a commercial pharmaceutical business with excellent growth prospects.”

GW Pharmaceuticals won earlier regulatory approval for the use of Sativex in Canada back in 2005. It is intended primarily as an “add-on treatment for symptom improvement,” according to The Pharma Letter, in patients “who have not responded adequately to other anti-spasticity medication.” The company hopes Sativex can find a much larger market in the United States, but approval is an uphill battle in a nation that has not been eager to move forward with marijuana-based medicines.

The company, which grows its marijuana in undisclosed locations in England, says marketing agreements with Bayer of Germany and Almirall of Spain could add up to more than $20 million annually from those companies alone.

Rehabilitation Directories

Most Popular
The Rehab Review
Cliffside Malibu

The “beach-house-relaxed” Cliffside Malibu claims to provide an oasis for recovering addicts and alcoholics. And that’s just what you'll get—if you’ve got the cash.

Morningside Recovery

For a “rehab near the beach” experience that isn’t quite as costly as similar SoCal competitors, head to this Newport Beach treatment facility.

AToN Center

Whether you’re interested in the 12 Steps, SMART Recovery, or holistic treatments, this luxurious, appealing and commendable 4.5 star (our system doesn't yet show the 1/2 star) San Diego rehab has a program for you. 


This exclusive Northern California rehab is all about client choice—as well as golf outings, Buddhist field trips and keeping up with the office.

Capo By The Sea

Capo By The Sea offers an executive rehab program complete with medical detox and a focus on dual-diagnosis issues, as well as an outpatient option in an environment that exudes the kind of beach house optimism one would expect from an Orange County recovery outfit.

Journey Malibu

Want many of the luxury amenities A-listers have come to expect—including an enormous backyard with a pool and patio, an herb garden, a volleyball net and a spectacular vista of the Santa Monica mountains—with a recovery program to match?

The Ultimate Guide to Rehab

What you need to know when choosing an addiction treatment center.

the fix tv