EpLink and Aurora Cannabis to partner on study for adults with drug-resistant epilepsy

First adult study in Canada to examine the impact of cannabis oil on the reduction of convulsive seizures

Toronto, ON – February 20, 2019 - EpLink - The Epilepsy Research Program of the Ontario Brain Institute – in collaboration with Aurora Cannabis’ wholly owned subsidiary MedReleaf – today announced the initiation of a clinical study to assess the impact of cannabis oil on reducing the number of motor seizures in adults.

The Health Canada approved study will assess whether cannabidiol (CBD) plus a low dose of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) will decrease the number of motor seizures in adults with drug-resistant epilepsy, when used in combination with other anti-epileptic drugs. Coordinated by EpLink, participants in the study will receive MedReleaf’s medical grade CBD oil capsules.

Recent scientific studies report that when used as an add-on therapy, CBD oil reduces the frequency of convulsive seizures in children with Dravet syndrome, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and tuberous sclerosis complex. People living with these forms of epilepsy have seizures that do not respond to medication, leading to long-term health risks including cognitive, behavioural and intellectual impairments.

“With the Canadian legalization of cannabis in October 2018, there is a pressing need for clinical data on the effective dosing, safety and long-term efficacy of cannabis oil, particularly in people living with epilepsy,” said Dr. Peter Tai, lead investigator of the study and neurologist at Toronto Western Hospital. “We hope that results will show reduced seizures and therefore contribute to our knowledge of the effects of medical grade cannabis oil and help improve patients’ health and quality of life.”

In addition to Dr. Tai, study collaborators include Dr. W. McIntyre Burnham, Co-Director of EpLink and Professor Emeritus at the University of Toronto, and Dr. Seyed Mirsattari of London Health Sciences Centre. Participants will be recruited at Toronto Western Hospital in Toronto and University Hospital in London, Ontario.

“Aurora and our team at MedReleaf are pleased to collaborate with the outstanding specialists at EpLink on this important research, which we hope will help address a significant unmet need in treatment for adults with drug-resistant epilepsy,” said Dr. Kelly Narine, Vice President, Global Research and Medical Affairs at Aurora Cannabis.  “With Aurora’s track record of 40 ongoing or completed clinical studies, we’re committed to continuing to advance evidence-based research like this to improve health outcomes for patients.”

For more information on this and other epilepsy clinical trials, please visit https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03808935.

About EpLink

EpLink is the Epilepsy Research Program of the Ontario Brain Institute. EpLink’s mission is to reduce seizures and improve quality of life for people with epilepsy through research. To learn more or to support our program, please visit www.eplink.ca or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

About Aurora

Headquartered in Edmonton, Alberta, with funded capacity in excess of 570,000 kg per year and sales and operations in 14 countries across five continents, Aurora is one of the world's largest and leading cannabis companies. Aurora is vertically integrated and horizontally diversified across every key segment of the value chain, from facility engineering and design to cannabis breeding and genetics research, cannabis and hemp production, derivatives, high value-add product development, home cultivation, wholesale and retail distribution.

Highly differentiated from its peers, Aurora has established a uniquely advanced, consistent and efficient production strategy, based on purpose-built facilities that integrate leading-edge technologies across all processes, defined by extensive automation and customization, resulting in the massive scale production of high quality product at ultra-low costs. Intended to be replicable and scalable globally, these production facilities are designed to produce cannabis of significant scale, with high quality, industry-leading yields, and ultra-low per gram production costs. Each of Aurora's facilities is built to meet European Union (EU) GMP standards, and both its first production facility and its wholly owned European medical cannabis distributor Pedanios have achieved this level of certification.

In addition to the Company's rapid organic growth and strong execution on strategic M&A, which to date includes nine companies acquired - CanvasRX, Peloton Pharmaceutical, Pedanios, H2 Biopharma, Urban Cultivator, BC Northern Lights, Larssen, CanniMed Therapeutics, Anandia Labs and MedReleaf - Aurora is distinguished by its reputation as a partner of choice and employer of choice in the global cannabis sector, having invested in and established strategic partnerships with a range of leading innovators, including: The Green Organic Dutchman Holdings Ltd. (TSX: TGOD), Radient Technologies Inc. (TSXV: RTI), Hempco Food and Fiber Inc. (TSXV: HEMP), Cann Group Ltd. (ASX: CAN), Micron Waste Technologies Inc. (CSE: MWM), Choom Holdings Inc. (CSE: CHOO), Namaste Technologies Inc. (TSXV: N), Evio Beauty Group (private), Wagner Dimas (private), CTT Pharmaceuticals (OTCC: CTTH), and Alcanna Inc. (TSX: CLIQ).

For more information about Aurora, please visit our investor website investor.auroramj.com.

References

  1. Devinsky O, Cross JH, Laux L, Marsh E, Miller I, Nabbout R, et al. Trial of Cannabidiol for Drug-Resistant Seizures in the Dravet Syndrome. N Engl J Med. 2017 25;376(21):2011–20.
  2. Devinsky O, Marsh E, Friedman D, Thiele E, Laux L, Sullivan J, et al. Cannabidiol in patients with treatment-resistant epilepsy: an open-label interventional trial. Lancet Neurol. 2016 Mar;15(3):270–8.
  3. Devinsky O, Cilio MR, Cross H, Fernandez-Ruiz J, French J, Hill C, et al. Cannabidiol: pharmacology and potential therapeutic role in epilepsy and other neuropsychiatric disorders. Epilepsia. 2014 Jun;55(6):791–802.
  4. Hess EJ, Moody KA, Geffrey AL, Pollack SF, Skirvin LA, Bruno PL, et al. Cannabidiol as a new treatment for drug-resistant epilepsy in tuberous sclerosis complex. Epilepsia. 2016 Oct;57(10):1617–24.
  5. Klein BD, Jacobson CA, Metcalf CS, Smith MD, Wilcox KS, Hampson AJ, et al. Evaluation of Cannabidiol in Animal Seizure Models by the Epilepsy Therapy Screening Program (ETSP). Neurochem Res. 2017 Jul;42(7):1939-1948.

Contact Information

Rebecca Woelfle
Communications Lead, EpLink
rwoelfle@eplink.ca
416-978-6381
www.eplink.ca

Laura Gallant
Aurora Cannabis
laura.gallant@auroramj.com
437-992-8429
investor.auroramj.com

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