Clinical trials to examine the effectiveness and safety of marijuana-based treatments for various gynecological conditions are expected to begin early next year. The trials will evaluate marijuana-based pharmacology products developed by Gynica, a female technology startup company based in Jerusalem.
The startup believes that the plant’s active ingredients can help ease painful gynecological conditions, including endometriosis and painful menstruation, which is also known as dysmenorrhea. Traditional treatments, such as hormone therapy, over-the-counter painkillers and surgical intervention. can be inadequate and pose their own health risks, as in the case of endometriosis.
Endometriosis is a disorder which causes tissues that normally line the uterus, known as the endometrium, to grow outside the uterus. These tissues usually become trapped inside the body and thicken, causing a build-up of adhesions and scar tissue. This results in excessive bleeding, painful intercourse and painful menstruation. In some cases, endometriosis can cause infertility.
Endometriosis has no definitive cause and no cure. It takes between 6 to 10 years for the disorder to be properly diagnosed, despite the fact that it affects every 1 in 10 women of reproductive age globally. This equates to about 180 million girls and women around the globe.
Gynica hopes to meet these unaddressed needs in women’s health by developing marijuana-based solutions for these gynecological conditions.
The CEO and co-founder of the start-up, Yotam Hod, stated that there exists so many gaps in how conditions that affect women are handled by both the scientific community and the medical community. The company has developed proprietary vaginal suppositories, which Hod says have been designed to decrease pain as well as inflammation, which is a key factor in both dysmenorrhea and endometriosis.
Dysmenorrhea is also common, with physicians noting that the associated pain varies between mild and severe. It is estimated that between 40% and 95% of women of reproductive age suffer from dysmenorrhea. Physicians note that for some individuals, dysmenorrhea and endometriosis are related.
Gynica believes that endometriosis and dysmenorrhea may be associated with a deficiency in the endocannabinoid system. The company references published research, which states that, after the brain, the female reproductive system is the region with the most endocannabinoid receptors. The endocannabinoid system is comprised of natural marijuana-like molecules produced by the human body, which regulate processes such as reproductive function, sleep, mood, appetite and pain.
Hod notes that their solutions show promise for treating these conditions and maintains that cannabinoid-based treatments may provide an improved solution for women who suffer from these conditions.
If successful, these trials could lend further credence to the profile of marijuana as a medicinal plant. The entire cannabis sector, including companies such as Red White & Bloom Brands Inc. (CSE: RWB) (OTCQX: RWBYF), could benefit from the positive news such outcomes would trigger.
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