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FDA approves cannabinoid

Via The Drug Update:

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International (NYSE:VRX) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given marketing approval for Cesamet (CII) (nabilone) oral capsules. Cesamet is used to treat nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy in patients who have failed to respond adequately to conventional anti-emetic treatments.
There is still a significant unmet need in treating one of the most feared and severe consequences of life-saving cancer therapies,”said Timothy C. Tyson, Valeant’s president and chief executive officer. “With the approval of Cesamet, Valeant is proud to offer a solution that will help alleviate one of the most common side effects of chemotherapy.” […]
The American Cancer Society estimates that there will be nearly 1.4 million new cancer cases in 2006. Approximately 70 to 80 percent of all patients receiving chemotherapy experience chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV). Although the use of anti-emetic agents decreases the incidence and severity of CINV, symptoms continue to occur in 40 to 60 percent of patients.
There is a need for cannabinoids, such as Cesamet, for patients who have exhausted conventional treatments but are still coping with the debilitating side effects of chemotherapy,” said Neal Slatkin, M.D., DABPM and director, Department of Supportive Care, Pain and Palliative Medicine at City of Hope.[..]
Cesamet should be used with caution in patients with a history of substance abuse, including alcohol abuse or dependence and marijuana use, since Cesamet is similar to the active ingredient found innaturally occurring marijuana.

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