Intellectual Property

Serotonin

We live in an age where technology touches our lives constantly. When it works well we don’t notice the tech – we only notice the benefits. Most of us have forgotten that anti-lock brakes on our cars used to be “hi-tech”. Or that “wireless internet” was once considered almost a miracle.

We know that delivering balanced nutrition in a single package to the human body can be challenging. Lexaria has already taken a giant first step in a process we believe makes us unique in the entire marketplace.

We actually have a patented method by which we infuse the healthy cocktail of molecules in our organically sourced hemp oil INSIDE the molecules of other ingredients. We work with lipids because the human endocannabinoid system is itself lipid based. We believe this is a more efficient way of delivering hemp oil ingredients to your body.  Said another way, a little hemp oil within one of our products might be similar to a LOT of hemp oil ingested without our proprietary technology!

Why does it matter?

  1. Raw hemp oil can taste pretty strong. But our process places the active ingredients inside of lipids (fats and fatty acids), and as a result our products simply taste good – many customers tell us they are the best tasting hemp oil products they have ever tried!
  2. Lipids are also absorbed very efficiently by the human digestive system, so we theorize that the cocktail of hemp terpines we pack inside those lipids are more bioavailable to your body than if they were not encased in the lipid.
  3. The human endocannabinoid system is itself a lipid-based signalling system working between synapses throughout many areas of your body. We think it makes sense to deliver hemp oil to you in a lipid-based delivery system.

So you have to ask yourself: if you are going to the trouble and expense of making sure you are ingesting hemp oil, doesn’t it make sense to be sure you are ingesting it in a manner that is as efficient and complete as possible?

But we are not stopping there: Lexaria is investigating and budgeting research and development dollars on additional related methods and techniques as we continually strive to find the most efficient methods possible – the highest bioavailability – of delivering active ingredients to you. So we are continually discussing methods of enhancing the technology we have already developed. If we can find ways to make it better, we will.

And we are investigating other technology related to this same concept of delivering active ingredients to you more efficiently than other known methods. It makes sense to ensure that the things you are eating are being delivered to your body as effectively as possible, with the comfort of good taste and the avoidance of stomach upset.

For competitive reasons we cannot disclose exactly in which directions all our theories are pointing. But we can say that we have several ideas we are excited about and are pursuing!  These ideas will try to advance the understanding of the fascinating hemp oil molecules and how they interact within the human body. There are already public companies concentrating on the adaptation of these molecules for various drugs in development or, in some areas of the world, already in medical use. Although we are not pursuing drug based therapies we remain convinced that there are advantageous methods of delivering hemp oil molecules to the body in wholesome, nutritious foods that are superior to Mother Nature’s original packaging.

Patents

We have filed a number of patents with the US Patent Office to protect our intellectual property.

We also filed an International patent application under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) procedure, in June 2015. Under the PCT, Lexaria has the ability to pursue patent applications of its core technology in up to 148 countries in such major markets as China, India, Japan, the US, the EU, and the UK, among others.

These patent applications for lipid-based delivery mechanisms cover but are not limited to molecules such as THC, CBD, Nicotine, ASA, Ibruprofen, and Vitamin E.

Nicotine and Our Technology

Once we realized that our technology opened the door to a methodology that could lead to reduced cannabis smoking in favor of cannabinoid ingestibles, we started asking more questions.

We wondered if our technology might have applications to other molecules that are in wide use, and we wondered if we could offer any improvements to current delivery methods. We learned that Nicotine is such a molecule.

More than 99% of all nicotine that is consumed worldwide is delivered through smoking cigarettes. Approximately 6,000,000 deaths per year, worldwide, are attributed primarily to the delivery of nicotine through the act of smoking according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which also estimates that over $170 billion per year is spent just in the USA on direct medical care costs for adult smokers. 69% of U.S. adult smokers want to quit smoking and 43% of US adult smokers have attempted to quit in any twelve month period.

Worldwide, retail cigarette sales were worth $722 billion in 2013, with over 5.7 trillion cigarettes sold to more than 1 billion smokers.

RELEVANCE: Lexaria postulates that delivery of nicotine to satisfy current demand, utilizing our patented lipid-delivery technology in common food groups, could shift demand from smoking cigarettes to alternative nicotine-based food products. Since most of the adverse health outcomes of nicotine consumption are associated with the delivery method and only to a lesser degree to the actual ingestion of nicotine, there could be a vast positive community health outcome through the reduction in smoking cigarettes. Additional research and regulatory compliant investigations would need to be conducted before otherwise healthy foods such as tea, coffee or energy bar snacks containing nicotine could be introduced. Nicotine is a named molecule in the latest Lexaria patent applications.

These are early days for Lexaria’s technological applications. We do not have any current products under development in the space of nicotine delivery with our technology, but we are investigating the best methods of making this available to the marketplace. We are also examining whether we could design and execute a series of in-vitro lab tests to begin generating real data as to the bioavailability of nicotine with and without our protective technology.

Non-Steriodal Anti-Inflammatories and Our Technology

Nicotine wasn’t the only molecule that we were curious about with respect to our lipid delivery technology. We knew that the number-one primary reason people were prescribed medical marijuana was for the management of pain. Naturally we thought about pain relief options.

Opioids are pain relief drugs such as morphine, oxycodone, fentanyl and more.  Although effective pain killers, they have a number of significant side effects such as addiction, sedation, respiratory depression, hormone imbalance and more. Other pain killers are not as effective, but we wondered if there was a way to bridge the gap between Opioids and NSAIDs.

We wondered if less powerful pain killers such as ibuprofen, asa and acetaminophen might be somewhat “empowered” if they had a more effective delivery mechanism. Today we do not know the answer, but by patenting our technology with regards to the NSAIDs, we hope to have protected our shareholders’ value.

Non-steroidal Anti-Inflammatories are the second-largest category of pain management treatment options in the world. The global pain management market was estimated at $22 billion in 2011, with $5.4 billion of this market being served by NSAID’s. The U.S. makes up over one-half of the global market. The opiods market (such as morphine) form the largest single pain management sector but are known to be associated with serious dependence and tolerance issues.

Some of the most commonly known NSAIDs are ASA (Aspirin), Ibruprofen (Advil, Motrin), and Acetaminophen (Tylenol). (Acetaminophen is not accepted by all persons to be an NSAID.) Although NSAIDs are generally a safe and effective treatment method for pain, they have been associated with a number of gastrointestinal problems including dyspepsia and gastric bleeding.

Lexaria postulates that delivery of NSAIDs through a lipid-based mechanism could provide the beneficial properties of pain relief with lessened negative gastrointestinal effects, and also potentially deliver lower dosages of active ingredients with similar pain management outcomes as current pill forms at higher dosages. ASA, Piroxicam, Diclofenac, Indomethacin, Ibruprofen, and Acetaminophen are all named molecules in the latest Lexaria patent applications.

We do not have any current products under development in the space of NSAID delivery with our technology, but we are investigating the best methods of making this available to the marketplace. We are also examining whether we could design and execute any in-vitro lab tests to begin generating real data as to the bioavailability of NSAIDs with and without our protective technology.

Vitamins and Our Technology

Although there is little if any harm in the current delivery methodology for most vitamins, it is also widely acknowledged that there is a great deal of waste in current practices. Many vitamins are not efficiently absorbed by the GI tract outside of their natural food sources. For this reason, those vitamins in pill form are often in much, much higher dosages than is preferable. This is done mostly because the vitamin industry is well aware that a large percentage of the vitamin molecule is not absorbed. But beyond the waste of vitamins and money, introduction of large volumes of vitamins can stress your liver and other bodily functions.

The global vitamin and supplement market is worth $68 billion according to Euromonitor. The category is both broad and deep, comprised of many popular and some lesser known substances. Vitamins in general are thought to be an $8.5 billion annual market in the U.S. The U.S. is the largest single national market in the world, and China and Japan are the 2nd and 3rd largest vitamin markets.

Vitamin E is fat soluble and can be incorporated into cell membranes which can protect them from oxidative damage. Global consumption of natural source vitamin E was 10,900 metric tons in 2013 worth $611.9 million.

Lexaria postulates that delivery of fat soluble vitamins through its patented lipid-based delivery mechanism may result in less waste and lower dosages required than most current pill forms. As well, ingestion of pills is an unpleasant experience for many people so it is possible that vitamin delivery through common food groups could vastly expand market demand for this sector. Vitamin E is a named molecule in the latest Lexaria patent applications.

We hope to conduct experiments that could lead to lower initial dosages of vitamins that would reduce potential stress on the body through the elimination process, reducing waste and leading to more comforting delivery.