If nothing else you have to admire the persistence of Cannabis Science, Inc. (OTCBB: CBIS) as the pharmaceutical grade medical marijuana research and development company continues to distribute press release after press release about the therapeutic benefits of pharmaceutical cannabis products in the treatment of various diseases and ailments. While CBIS maintains that one day “all Americans will have access to a safe and effective FDA approved medicine regardless of which state they live in” the reality is they may not be around to see that day.
Despite their struggles CBIS remains optimistic and on Tuesday the biotech company announced that they had “signed a major multi-company acquisition agreement that will boost revenues, strengthen pharmaceutical operations and our management team.” According to the company the additions “will enhance our internal operations and help to fast track our full line of Cannabis Science Brand pharmaceutical and over the counter products through multiple distribution channels to be made available nationally.”
Dr. Robert Melamede Ph.D., President and CEO of CBIS, commented on this news “These deals include strategic relationships with pharmacists and the exclusive production of organically grown strains for our scientific medicinal formulations. Additional accessory businesses will include laboratory capacity for product quality assurance and testing, and educational platforms to produce and distribute information about the science of cannabis that will further our cause through education.”
Here’s the problem for CBIS, it’s not a matter of forming strategic relationships, bolstering their laboratory capacity, or even educating the public about the benefits of medicinal marijuana products; at the end of the day they are fighting the Federal Government which has, up to this point, made it clear that they will not endorse the industry. That being said, CBIS’s goal of gaining FDA approval for their products remains a long shot at this point.
Now back on February 2, 2012 CBIS provided an overall corporate and operations guidance outlook for 2012 in which they identified three main markets for distribution: FDA approved prescriptions, OTC Non-psychoactive nutraceuticals, and licensed dispensaries in legal Medical Marijuana states. Those are ambitious targets considering the current distribution channel that CBIS has at their disposal, that being Cannabis Therapeutics. While Cannabis Therapeutics is Colorado’s largest medical marijuana resources facility that has hardly created a revenue boon for CBIS.
Despite the uncertainty that surrounds the future of CBIS the company remains one of the most actively traded stocks at the moment with Tuesday’s volume topping the 38 million mark and that being followed with more than 26 million shares moving hands on Wednesday. Things have slowed a bit on Thursday with 9 million moving late in the day but CBIS is still seeing action.
Shares of the company, which were at a 52-week low of 0.0085 back in December, are currently trading around the 0.0484 level and while that is obviously better than two months ago it is still a far cry from where they were a year ago when shares were at a 52-week high of 0.1370.
CBIS believes they can drive that share price higher with their efforts in cancer treatment, specifically with basal cell and squamous cell carcinomas. The company remains convinced that they will one day pick up FDA approval and hinted as much in a February 1, 2012 press release in which they stated the FDA approval of Erivedge for the treatment of advanced basal cell carcinoma put them “in a very good position moving forward with its current Cancer solutions.”
According to CBIS “For the FDA to approve a drug with serious side effects within six months, suggests that the Cannabis Science should receive similar consideration when we submit our application for the treatment of basal cell carcinoma.” Unfortunately that’s not exactly how the FDA process works and any investor would see through this optimism.
Right now CBIS is relying on self-medicated patients and publishing before and after pictures, needless to say this isn’t exactly an acceptable path for FDA approval. Forget about the legitimacy of CBIS’s claims and their strong belief that pharmaceutical grade medical marijuana will one day be accessible to all who need it. The reality is cancer treatment remains a Big Pharma stronghold and there is just too much money to be lost by these companies who spend billion sin research and development for a medicinal marijuana company to step in and claim the market.