Nextleaf Solutions Ltd (CSE:OILS) (OTCMKTS:OILFF) revealed it had bolstered its IP (intellectual property) with a new patent covering a cannabinoid-derived prodrug, which could have unique medicinal benefits.
The US Patent and Trademark Office has awarded the firm a patent for a process called the acetylation of cannabinoids.
"Nextleaf's patented process produces THC-O-Acetate, a cannabinoid-derived metabolic prodrug with potentially very unique medicinal benefits associated with efficient and targeted drug delivery," said Ryan Ko, the group's chief technology officer.
Put simply, a prodrug is a biologically inactive compound that can be metabolized in the body to produce an active drug. Prodrugs use various physical and chemical modifications to improve the features of active drugs.
"Anecdotal accounts have reported gradual onset, longer-lasting benefits, and altered psychological effects when compared to THC," added Ko.
Nextleaf expects opportunities to commercialize this patent through IP licensing to pharmaceutical companies, or producing IP protected cannabinoid products where legal jurisdictions allow, it said in a statement.
Revenue from royalties
The firm began making revenue in December 2019 from royalties earned on its patent portfolio.
"With this new U.S. patent, we are able to efficiently modify and potentially improve upon the medicinal properties of a natural product that has been in use for thousands of years," said Paul Pedersen, Nextleaf's CEO.
"As large pharmaceutical companies look to enter this space we believe such IP protected processes and resulting products will draw a lot of attention."
Nextleaf owns a portfolio of 14 issued patents and over 60 pending patents for the extraction, purification, and formulation of cannabinoids.
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