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Drug Science T21 study to continue for fifth year with new partners

The new partners will help to secure the future of the project.



Study hopes to show cannabis would be 'cost-effective' on NHS
There are now over 4,000 patients enrolled on T21.

Drug Science’s medical cannabis study, T21, will continue for a fifth year with three new industry partners on board.

Launched in 2019 by the UK’s independent body on drugs, T21 (formerly Project Twenty21) aims to build the evidence base for the safety and efficacy of Cannabis Based Medicinal Products (CBMPs) and increase access to these medicines on the NHS.

The study now has over 4,000 patients enrolled, prescribed cannabis-based medicines for a variety of physical and mental health conditions. It allows registered patients to access discounted private prescriptions for cannabis-based medicines in exchange for participating in the study’s data collection. 

Several research papers have been published highlighting the findings of the data so far, suggesting ‘considerable promise’ for cannabis-based medicines in a wide range of chronic conditions.

On Tuesday 12 December, Drug Science announced that SOMAí Pharmaceuticals, Blackpoint Biotech and 4C Labs would be joining long-standing partner EthyPharm as collaborators to see the project into its fifth year. 

The new partners will help to ensure the future of the project, allowing patients to continue with their discounted medications, and for scientists to collect health data on these drugs and their effects. 

They will also allow T21 to extend its formulary of cannabis-based medicines offering more choice to patients on the study. Patients now have access to a broad range of formulations, including  flowers and oils, capsules, inhalers and sublingual administrations.

Anne Schlag, acting chief executive of Drug Science, commented: “We’re very happy to be able to continue T21 with our esteemed new and existing partners. Now going into its fifth year, T21 remains essential as a way of allowing UK patients to access discounted CBMPs prescriptions, whilst at the same time, furthering the scientific evidence base on these medicines. We already know that CBMPs can benefit a wide range of conditions – from intractable epilepsy to chronic pain as well as various psychiatric conditions. 

It is vital to understand how long lasting these results are, whether they differ between population groups, and which CBMPs are most helpful for which conditions. The continuation of T21 allows us to gain many more of these understandings, which we hope will ultimately lead to widening public access to these life-changing medications via NHS prescriptions.”

READ MORE: UK data shows ‘considerable promise’ for medicinal cannabis in range of conditions

SOMAÍ Pharmaceuticals is a Lisbon-based pharmaceutical and biotech company centred on the manufacturing  and distribution of EU GMP-certified cannabinoid-containing pharmaceuticals throughout Europe. 

Michael Sassano, Founder, Chairman & CEO, said: “We are delighted to be joining T21 and support one of the largest global registries on Cannabis Based Medicinal Products. Our goal is to provide access to the most comprehensive range of cannabis products to UK patients and gather real-world evidence on the transformative effects of cannabis-based therapeutics. SOMAÍ Pharmaceuticals aims to provide best-in-class care globally, with entry into the UK as a significant milestone.”

Blackpoint Biotech has developed a medical inhaler and sublingual spray to allow for accurate and controlled dosing of cannabinoids, both of which will be available through T21. 

A spokesperson  said: “We believe the T21 study provides vital research that advances cannabis products as medicines. Consequently we are delighted to be partnering with Drug Science in support of T21 as we seek to improve patient and practitioner experience by offering new means of administration that enable increased accuracy in dosing.”

Following recent distribution agreements with 4C Labs, Canadian cannabis companies BZAM and Organigram will each supply approximately 600 kg of flower to the UK market annually for the next two years.

“We are proud to be a part of  T21 for 2024. We have hand-picked cultivators for their ability to produce the best value in cannabis-based prescription medicines,” 4C Labs said.

“We look forward to serving the doctors and patients who are a part of this very important study.”

Martindale Pharma, part of the Ethypharm Group, added: “We are delighted to be supporting Drug Science and the T21 observational study. As a company with extensive experience in central nervous system and pain-related conditions we welcome and support the continuation of research looking at improvements in quality of life for people living with complex and often difficult to treat conditions.”

Sarah Sinclair is a respected cannabis journalist writing on subjects related to science, medicine, research, health and wellness. She is managing editor of Cannabis Health, the UK’s leading title covering medical cannabis and CBD, and sister titles, Cannabis Wealth and Psychedelic Health. Sarah has an NCTJ journalism qualification and an MA in Journalism from the University of Sunderland. Sarah has over six years experience working on newspapers, magazines and digital-first titles, the last two of which have been in the cannabis sector. She has also completed training through the Medical Cannabis Clinicians Society securing a certificate in Medical Cannabis Explained. She is a member of PLEA’s (Patient-Led Engagement for Access) advisory board, has hosted several webinars on cannabis and women's health and has moderated at industry events such as Cannabis Europa. Sarah Sinclair is the editor of Cannabis Health. Got a story? Email / Follow us on Twitter: @CannabisHNews / Instagram: @cannabishealthmag


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