Oxford University, England’s oldest such institution, will be home to a new multi-million dollar medical marijuana research program. The university received an investment of $12.36 million from private equity firm Kingsley Capital Partners, Oxford’s partner in the program.
The deal is funded through Kingsley Capital Partners Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies (OCT), a biopharmaceutical firm. Kingsley Capital brings forth the needed finances for this kind of program while Oxford University will provide the “clinical expertise and research in immunology, neuroscience and cancer, to find ways of developing new treatments for those suffering with pain, cancer and inflammatory disease.”
Scientists at Oxford will be enabled to study the chemical structure and medical value of cannabinoids. The program seeks to develop “innovative new therapies to help millions of people around the world,” said Neil Mahapatra, Managing Partner at Kingsley Capital Partners.
The new program received glowing approval from Sir Patrick Stewart, the actor who recently made headlines after publicizing his use of cannabis spray for arthritis in his hands.
Stewart told CNBC in an email,
“I enthusiastically support the Oxford University Cannabis Research Plan. This is an important step forward for Britain in a field of research that has too long been held back by prejudice, fear, and ignorance. I believe this program of research might result in benefits for people like myself as well as millions of others.”
In the general sphere of scientific marijuana research, Oxford will have some catching up to do with Israel, a nation that has solidified itself at the forefront of medical marijuana research.
While Medical marijuana is not currently legal in the United Kingdom, non-psychoactive CBD (cannabidiol) products were recently classified as medicine by the Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
Just last November, Members of Parliament began calling for the United Kingdom to follow the United States’ suit and legalize cannabis for both medical and personal use.
Perhaps this new program will expedite that legalization process and answer the MP’s requests.
Cover Image Courtesy of Allie Beckett