A select committee of Britain’s House of Lords this week accused the Medicines Control Agency of not dealing with cannabis based medicines in the same impartial manner as it dealt with other medicines.
In its report it said that the agency’s insistence that new toxicology data were needed on one of the 60 cannabinoids present in raw cannabis would delay the approval of new cannabis based medicines, which patients with severe conditions, such as multiple sclerosis, needed.
The select committee on science and technology also deplored the “postcode prosecuting” of people who used cannabis for their own therapeutic purposes. It called for an end to the prosecution of genuine therapeutic users who possessed or grew cannabis for their own use.
It claimed that the medical authorities were making it more difficult than necessary for drug companies to produce cannabis based medicines. So far only two trials into cannabis based products had been approved by the Medical Research Council, one in Derriford Hospital, Plymouth, and one in Hammersmith Hospital, London. Only one of those had started recruiting patients.
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