Wellnex Life

ASX-listed Wellnex Life has raised A$6.2 million through the issue of secured convertible notes as it aims to become one of the first Australian companies to enter the schedule 3, over-the-counter medicinal cannabis market.

The firm said it has begun the approval process for a schedule 3 medicine and anticipates having a product in market by the end of 2023.

Wellnex Life CEO George Karafotias

It claimed its “strong relationships with pharmacy retailers and wholesalers” put it in position to become “one of the first Australian companies to enter this market”.

The company also plans to use the funds raised to launch an e-commerce platform offering its health and wellness products.

CEO George Karafotias said: “The introduction of medicinal cannabis and launch of a unique e-commerce platform will enable us to further increase our presence in this rapidly growing industry.

“We have made significant progress in the last 10 months, with the launch of multiple new brands and a supply agreement with GlaxoSmithKline.

“With the funds raised we look forward to progressing our aim of becoming a major participant in the fast-growing health and wellness market.”

Incannex Healthcare

Incannex has reported further positive results from a phase two clinical trial of its cannabinoid combination drug IHL-42X in treating patients with obstructive sleep apnoea.

A total of 10 patients completed the trial at the University of Western Australia, receiving three dosage levels and a placebo across four, seven-day treatment periods.

The study monitored reductions in the patients’ apnoea hypopnoea index (AHI), measured by the number of times per hour their airway is blocked or partially blocked.

It found dosing at all three levels reduced AHI far more than the placebo, with the lowest dose (2.5mg of THC and 125mg of acetazolamide) having the greatest impact, reducing the AHI score by an average of 50.7% compared to baseline. 

Patients also experienced significant improvement in oxygen saturation levels resulting in better sleep quality and reduced cardiovascular stress.

Incannex said: “This supports [our] hypothesis that IHL-42X is an effective treatment for OSA. The observation that low-dose IHL-42X was the most effective at reducing AHI is encouraging for [its] development as a pharmaceutical as a lower dose will reduce the risk of side effects and the cost of goods.”

Incannex said the success of the drug at the lowest dose also meant plasma THC levels the morning after were under the threshold for impaired driving in some countries.

Tetra Bio-Pharma

Canadian firm Tetra Bio-Pharma has announced the launch of wholly owned subsidiary Tetra Bio-Pharma Australia, a research company focused on the execution of clinical trials. 

The move follows the recent announcement of Tetra’s partnership with Cannvalate for the performance of clinical trials of Tetra’s drug candidates in Australia. The new entity will benefit from a 43.5% tax credit on all money spent on clinical trials here.

CEO Dr Guy Chamberland said: “We look forward to working with our strategic partners and building value for our current and future investors. 

“These are very exciting times for us as we continue to drive scientific excellence and deliver on the promise of cannabinoid-derived transformative medicines to improve patient health and quality of life.”

Zelira Therapeutics 

Zelira has published analysis of longitudinal, real-world data from 94 patients diagnosed with chronic insomnia and treated with its Zenivol product.

Dr Oludare Odumosu

Zenivol reduced Insomnia Severity Index (ISI) scores from 19.5 (moderate clinical insomnia) to 14.3 (subthreshold insomnia) while 44% of patients receiving the treatment were reduced to subthreshold insomnia levels and a further 22% achieved a rating of no clinically significant insomnia.

However, 27% of severe clinical insomnia patients had no improvement in their ISI score

An effective dosing range was established based on the results of the study, which completes the observational trial conducted in partnership with Emyria.

Managing Director and CEO Dr Oludare Odumosu said the findings “continue to build the story for Zenivol as an effective and safe therapeutic treatment for chronic insomnia symptoms”.

“These results build a strong platform to accelerate additional clinical and regulatory validations for our Rx products,” he added.

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...

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