Dutch Pharma Firm Preps Pot Pill

Drug may hit shelves in 5 years for migraine, Parkinson's victims
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 27, 2008 1:31 PM CST
A marijuana plant is seen in this undated file photo.   (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – Why smoke pot when you can pop a pill? Echo Pharmaceuticals is jumping into Phase II trials for a new cannabis pill that could snag 20%-30% of the booming medical marijuana market, Reuters reports. The Dutch firm plans to sell the pill within 5 years, giving medical marijuana users a healthier way to take the drug.

Echo may even beat its usual 5-year track to tackle a $5.85 billion worldwide market, where a Canadian company is the only competition. “We have an easy case, as the effects of the drug have been known for thousands of years,” said Echo’s CEO. Echo plans to start clinical trials this year and market the drug as Namisol, targeted to victims of migraines, MS, Parkinson's, and even Alzheimer's.