Going From Plant to Pharma

Hilary Kramer

Hilary Kramer is an investment analyst and portfolio manager with 30 years of experience on Wall Street.

While the cannabis cultivation stocks are in the early stages of recovering from their summer swoon, the companies that process the raw crop into laboratory-grade pharmaceuticals keep moving through the clinical process.

Cara Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:CARA) is seriously underrated right now, with a few niche therapies roughly a year from a formal regulatory review and a cannabis-derived pain drug currently at the pivotal trial stage. The potential is huge.

This molecule has the kind of profile that could replace opioids and their side effects (including addiction) once and for all. The medical logic is obvious in hindsight as the plant was traditionally used to relieve pain. Now, its derivatives can do the job more scientifically.

Of course, self-medicating with the raw plant is imprecise. With all these “pharmaceutical cannabis” companies, the goal is to find the right molecule inside the plant and then refine it so that it pinpoints a specific process within the body.

CARA’s drug is working to block pain receptors and shut down the flow of uncomfortable signals to the brain. Whoever can do that has a blockbuster on their hands.

My Turbo Trader subscribers have already made money here years ahead of the final Food & Drug Administration decision. They’re approaching the scoring zone once again.

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