LEIDEN, The Netherlands — Pioneering cannabis science firm ebbu has released findings from its innovative clinical research into the mood effects of cannabis. These findings were presented this week at the 28th annual conference for the International Cannabinoid Research Society (ICRS), where the world’s foremost cannabis researchers convened to discuss ongoing studies and findings with their peers, gain valuable feedback and forge partnerships with the goal of developing a deeper understanding of how the body processes and is affected by cannabis.
“The results of our human observational studies have exceeded our expectations,” said Jon Cooper, CEO of ebbu. “The primary objective in our research is to define how certain cannabinoid and terpene formulations will produce desirable sensations, whether it’s an uptick in stimulating energy, a calming effect or another emotional experience.”
For the second year in a row at the prestigious ICRS conference, ebbu Director of Clinical Pharmacology Dr. Jonathan Martin (pictured), shared the company’s latest research in a poster session. The 2018 poster presentation, “Cannabinoid and Terpene Formulations Elicit Distinct Mood Effects,” represents a shift in ebbu’s research; last year’s poster presentation involved mood effect results from strain-specific extracts in vapor form. In recent months, the ebbu cellular pharmacology team has ramped up identification of which cannabinoid formulations most greatly affect human cells. Dr. Martin and his colleagues developed a number of cannabinoid and terpene formulations—based on ebbu’s findings and study of other research literature—and conducted observational studies.
The poster’s comparison of a stimulating formulation and a relaxing formulation are presented with visual analogue scales that display distinct, quantitative results for each.
“One of the biggest hurdles for consumers who are interested in using cannabis is that outcomes can vary widely and be unpredictable,” Dr. Martin said. “These human observational studies we are conducting at ebbu are so important because we can better understand the real-life implications. Our clinical tests in Colorado go beyond cellular-level study or models involving animals, and wouldn’t be possible in other places where full prohibition is in effect. At ebbu, contributing to the scientific discourse on cannabis is an absolute necessity.”
Dr. Martin, whose expertise covers molecular and cell biology, as well as biochemistry, leads the team responsible for developing the cannabinoid and terpene formulations to be consumed in vaporized form by test subjects, and they conducted the human observational trials in a randomized, double-blind format. A group of vetted volunteers tried a sample without any instruction regarding anticipated outcomes, and answered a questionnaire about how the specific formulation affects their moods and emotions. The observational studies are ongoing.
“Our research is getting dialed in; the strain extracts were testing basic hypotheses, but now it’s progressing to formulations that we know will greatly change the way consumers approach cannabis by eliminating guesswork and delivering consistent results for most consumers,” Dr. Martin said.
“What we’re doing at ebbu extends far beyond the business implications—it’s about contributing to the body of cannabis research and unlocking new possibilities in how certain cannabis compounds directly affect the brain and our moods,” Dr. Martin continued. “We hope our scientific contributions will foster a greater understanding of the intricate interplay of the cannabis plant’s fundamental components.”
Beyond testing distinct cannabinoid and terpene formulations for desired outcomes, such as a stimulating sensation and a relaxing sensation that are documented in the 2018 ICRS poster, ebbu’s clinical pharmacology scientists are identifying which components yield undesirable outcomes.
“We have been able to eliminate a number of the negative side effects of cannabis, such as increased anxiety. We simply avoid using specific compounds that can produce these undesirable results,” Mr. Cooper said. “While this research has yielded substantive data, it is important to consider that no pharmacological compound will yield an identical outcome for every person who consumes it. But our work with these formulations will provide a much more consistent result than smoking a joint and hoping that relaxation—not buzzy energy—is what follows.”
The ebbu science team prioritizes sharing knowledge for the betterment of all. Chief Science Officer Brian Reid was a featured speaker this spring at the American Chemical Society national meeting in New Orleans, and has given talks at other top-level medical conferences, including the World Pharma Congress: Epigenetics Screening; the Revolutionaries for Global Health Summit; and the International Meeting on AAA Proteins.