Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies: Phase 1 approval for lead chronic pain drug (LON:OCTP)

Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies (OCT) develops non-opioid, non-addictive pain pharmaceuticals. Its lead product OCT461201 (“201”) is an oral product to relieve peripheral nerve pain caused by cancer chemotherapy (CIPN) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Management estimate that the global CIPN market is worth around £1.7bn with 6.4% CAGR forecast, and the current IBS market around £2.1bn. OCT is aiming to develop a range of pain-related products to capture a section of the £59.9bn global market.

OCT announced in May that the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and the Wales Research Ethics Committee (REC2) have given approval to commence phase 1 human study trial of 201. This is the first phase 1 in-human trial of 201, and is being conducted by Simbec-Orion. It will determine safety, tolerability and pharmacokinetics of 201 in healthy volunteers. Additional drugs, a second generation cannabinoid receptor type 2 agonist and a cannabinoid receptor type 1 agonist, are being developed for indications such as inflammation, chronic pains and cancers.

The company announced in March the renewal of its Home Office Licence for the fifth consecutive year which allows it to continue to supply schedule 1 drugs for clinical research purposes. Additionally, Clarissa Sowemimo-Coker — appointed in December as interim CEO — was appointed permanent CEO in April, having been at the company for four years and delivering its first submissions to MHRA and REC 2.

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