InMed has announced that the cannabinoid that is the basis for both its epidermolysis bullosa (EB) and glaucoma programs is cannabinol (CBN). This puts InMed in an attractive position (especially from an intellectual property perspective) as other medical cannabis programs are focused on either tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and/or cannabidiol (CBD) for a variety of indications. Importantly, from a regulatory perspective, CBN is believed to have either slight or no psychoactivity, but it does have a number of beneficial effects including reducing inflammation and intraocular pressure (IOP).
CBN makes up substantially less than 1% of the cannabis plant and is a product of THC oxidation. Although related to THC, it is a relatively weak partial agonist of both cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2. In studies conducted so far on CBN, it has demonstrated little to no psychoactivity. However, there is evidence of efficacy across a number of indications.
The company recently presented data at the 2020 EB World Congress in London, which indicated that CBN has an effect on pain and inflammation that will likely be important in the treatment of EB. Also, CBN may significantly upregulate the keratin K15, which may be able to compensate for a malfunctioning K14 and combine with K5 to form the necessary adhesion between the epidermis and dermis. This could potentially lead to greater skin integrity and fewer blisters in EB simplex patients with K14 mutations.
In cats, CBN has previously been shown to significantly reduce IOP (the goal for a glaucoma therapy). The company believes it also has potential to have an impact on protecting the optic nerve. INM-088 has completed in vitro testing and InMed has initiated multiple formulation and pharmacology studies. These studies are expected to be completed in early 2020.
We are maintaining our valuation of C$259m or C$1.50 per basic share (C$1.24 per diluted share). We will review our probabilities of success for INM-755 and INM-088 as the products progress. InMed had C$14.8m in cash and marketable securities at 30 September and we believe this provides a runway into FY21.