Once New York gives out five highly coveted licenses to legally grow and sell medical cannabis next month, there will be a transformation in the way marijuana data is captured and used.
Among the requirements for obtaining a license is the use of metered dosing. Companies that receive the licenses will be able to open up to four retail marijuana stores each, giving New York a total of 20 medical cannabis dispensaries. The state of New York has through July to make a decision on how to award the licenses, although it could make its decision much sooner.
In California, medical cannabis has been legal for more than 17 years, and yet there is no usable clinical data because there has been no attempt to regulate dosage. Unlike California, New York plans to start dosage metering immediately in order to provide data to support the benefits of cannabis to the medical community. According to Andrei Bogulubov, an executive vice president at PalliaTech, the new dosage requirements could revolutionize the way cannabis is perceived.
PalliaTech is one of approximately 43 companies vying for one of those five licenses. It is a medical marijuana producer based out of Long Island. PalliaTech has invested $2 million and the last two years toward the development of PT1000, a vaporizer that meets the state’s medical and pharmaceutical requirements. They have already secured its leases for its four dispensaries in anticipation of winning one of the licenses.
Y5RX is another company that has applied for a license. It has created disposable vaporizer sticks to be used with certain types of cannabis plants.
Metered dosing is a necessity to determine how beneficial cannabis can be for the medical community. Bogulubov states,
“Doctors do not give you a bag of heart medicine in powdered form and say, ‘See how this works.’ They have to treat to the dose response curve.”
Bogulubov would not disclose where his company receives its funding, although he did imply that his company’s investors like the idea of being involved but “can’t invest as the institution,” possibly because of the stigma and controversy that is still attached to marijuana.
It is difficult to predict the exact amount of cannabis a patient will need because it affects all people differently. What may work for some, will not necessarily work for others. It will be interesting to see the results of the collected data a few years into New York’s medical cannabis program.