London company at forefront of cannabis research

Dec 18, 2019

The Londonbased clinical research company KGK Science has recently received approval from Health Canada to conduct human trials examining safety and effects of cannabis, including edibles. Moreover, the company’s recent work has also focused on examining cannabis nutrition claims through science.

KGK Science was recently acquired by Auxly Cannabis Group, and had initially focused on clinical trials of natural and nutrition products before expanding to testing of cannabis-containing products.

Currently, there is no legislation requiring companies to finance scientific testing in order to back up their claims. However, the company CEO Najla Guthrie says that scientifically-backed health benefit claims of cannabis products can help companies in selling their products.

“That’s what’s going to differentiate their products in the marketplace, is for them to be able to show how long it takes to absorb, how long it’s in the system, the safety profile,”

Najla Guthrie, CEO of KGK Science, to CBC News.

Recently, KGK Science has recruited dozens of London residents to participate in human trials of the effects of an American-made cannabis oil produced by the company New Age Nanotech.

“The trial will look at the absorption rates of THC and CBD in participants,” the company’s marketing director, Lauren Redman, told the London Free Press. “Dosage is a huge factor [with edibles]. People don’t really know how much to take and how much to eat. There isn’t really clear guidelines on how it will affect you when administered orally versus vaping or smoking.”

With recent legalization of cannabis-containing edibles, which became available for sale in December, Guthrie said that the company’s goal is to provide cutting-edge science for the next wave of legalization. “It is still the wild west but there is a lot innovation going on… I think that’s where a lot of the interest is in many of these products, but the science has to lead the way,” she said. In addition to testing products containing THC, the psychoactive component of cannabis, KGK Science is also testing the effects of CBD, the non-psychoactive molecule present in both cannabis and hemp plants. Being one of the few companies of its type in Canada and the U.S., KGK Science is seizing key opportunities in its niche market. 

KGK Science is currently testing a new device that, according to Guthrie, could become a game-changer for law enforcement when testing for impaired driving. Moreover, the company has also obtained a Canadian research license for human trials in cannabis-based pharmaceutical products.