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Kanabo Research aims vaporization at medicinal cannabis users

Company is developing medical grade vaporizers and extracts meant to treat central nervous system disorders

Luke Tress is an editor and a reporter in New York for The Times of Israel.

The annual CannaTech event held in Tel Aviv brings together cannabis professionals from Israel and abroad. March 20, 2017. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)
The annual CannaTech event held in Tel Aviv brings together cannabis professionals from Israel and abroad. March 20, 2017. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Kanabo Research, a Tel Aviv-based medical cannabis company, is aiming its vaporization formulations and devices at medical patients instead of the recreational users more commonly associated with vaporization. The company is closing its seed round funding and launching its initial product offerings at the CannaTech summit this week.

Kanabo develops medical cannabis extracts meant to treat specific nervous system disorders. Five formulations are currently under development, the company said, and two are patent-pending. The company’s VapePod vaporizer delivers precise and consistent doses of the extracts and is undergoing certification as a medical device. The vaporizer is activated when the user inhales through the mouthpiece, and vibrates until the proper dosage is delivered.

Kanabo’s CEO and founder Avihu Tamir saw an opportunity to produce a medicinal vaporizer about four years ago, he said, when he realized users of medical cannabis were smoking instead of vaporizing. Vaporizing extracts produces less toxins than smoking the plant’s flower, he said.

“Flowers are not medicinal, it’s an agricultural product,” Tamir said. “Flowers will disappear, the future is extractions.”

Kanabo is developing its formulations based on feedback from licensed medicinal users who are suffering from problems such as insomnia and anxiety disorders. While most companies focus on the two most prominent cannabinoids, THC and CBD, Kanabo is focusing on tweaking the levels of minor cannabinoids in their products, such as cannabinol, Tamir said.

Kanabo's vaporizers on display at the CannaTech conference in Tel Aviv, March 20, 2017. (Luke Tress/Times of Israel)
Kanabo’s vaporizers on display at the CannaTech conference in Tel Aviv, March 20, 2017. (Luke Tress/Times of Israel)

The growing medicinal market is still lacking a medical grade vaporization device, Tamir said.

“Pharmaceutical companies don’t see vaporization as something medical,” he said.

The company is in talks with regulators in Israel and hopes to get approval for their products in Israel and Europe, although FDA approval will be more difficult, Tamir said.

Early last month, the Israeli government took an initial step toward allowing Israeli companies to export medicinal cannabis products.

The annual CannaTech conference takes place in Tel Aviv this week. The event includes presentations by politicians, entrepreneurs, researchers and others involved in cannabis-related technology and innovation.

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