DHHS Plans to Award Exclusive Rights to Apply Marijuana as a Medical Therapeutic

By admin on December 15th 2011

LOS ANGELES, CA – Dec. 15, 2011–The Union of Medical Marijuana Patients has just discovered that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is about to award an exclusive license to KannaLife Sciences, Inc. of New York to develop medical therapeutics based on the chemistry of cannabis. According to the notice in the Federal Register, public comments will be accepted through Monday, December 19.

 “We find it hypocritical and incredible that on the one hand, the U.S. Department of Justice is persecuting medical cannabis patient associations, asserting that the federal government regards marijuana as having absolutely no medical value, despite overwhelming clinical evidence,” said Union director James Shaw. “On the other hand, the Department of Health and Human Services is planning to grant patent rights with possible worldwide application to develop medicines based on cannabis.”

While the Union applauds the U.S. government’s efforts into researching the medical value of cannabis, Shaw said, “they should have affirmatively rescheduled cannabis when they discovered it had medical efficacy and, of course, it makes no sense for the government to provide U.S. Patent 6,630,507, which the government owns, to a single company with exclusive rights.” He urged medical cannabis patient associations and patients using marijuana for medical reasons to protest this giveaway to one pharmaceutical firm.

Comments need to be submitted in writing by next Monday to Betty B. Tong, Ph.D., Senior Licensing and Patenting Manager, Office of Technology Transfer, National Institutes of Health, 6011 Executive Boulevard, Suite 325, Rockville MD 20852-3804, fax (301) 402-0220, or tongb@mail.nih.gov.