Avecho Biotechnology has entered into a licensing and supply agreement with US CBD company Medterra Pharma to develop and commercialise its soft-gel CBD capsule for the treatment of arthritis. 

Medterra will develop the product with a view to supporting US Food and Drug Administration approval, in parallel with Avecho’s efforts to register it for sleep indications with the TGA in Australia.

Medterra’s scientists have already demonstrated the therapeutic potential of CBD for arthritis in preclinical models, and a six-week human study using the soft-gel for pain reduction in patients with osteoarthritis of the knee is scheduled for early next year.

Avecho CEO Dr Paul Gavin said: “While Avecho focuses on a sleep-related indication, this agreement allows Medterra to fund the development of the CBD soft-gel product for an additional indication, providing Avecho with potential upside for an indication we do not have the bandwidth to pursue ourselves.

“Using this strategy, we plan to collaborate with reputable, well-resourced partners to progress our products towards regulatory approval on a number of parallel indications.”

Avecho said the osteoarthritis therapeutics market is projected to reach US$11 billion by 2025. 

The Australian Rheumatology Association recently updated its stance on medicinal cannabis, stating it does not recommend the routine use of cannabinoids to treat arthritis and other musculoskeletal conditions until more evidence is forthcoming.

Prior to launching Cannabiz, Martin was co-founder and CEO of Asia-Pac’s leading B2B media and marketing information brand Mumbrella, overseeing its sale to Diversified Communications in 2017. A journalist...