Moroccan laboratory prepares to embark on medical cannabis research


Bethan Rose Jenkins , Cannabis News Writer/Editorial

One month since a cannabis legalization bill was adopted in Morocco, a partnership agreement has been signed between the Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah University of Fez (USMBA) and Laprophan laboratory to promote biomedical research on medical cannabis.

President of USMBA Radouane Mrabet and Laprophan’s CEO Farid Bennis signed onto the agreement. The USMBA is renowned for specializing in biomedical research, training and development work.

“The University has accumulated a long experience in medical and pharmacological research, in particular in the valuation of medicinal and aromatic plants, including medical cannabis, as well as in clinical trials within the framework, of the treatment of refractory epilepsy based on medical cannabis,” said Mrabet.

The partnership intends to evaluate the medical and paramedical values of medicinal and aromatic plants. Moreover, the team have their sights set on pursuing clinical toxicology, preclinical, and clinical studies pertaining to the medical benefits of therapeutic cannabis.

The laboratory’s CEO Bennis says that “the agreement is a recognition of the USMBA’s commitment to the development of scientific research and innovation.” He went on to say that the partnership will greatly contribute to “the development of Moroccan biomedical research with the aim of enhancing the therapeutic potential of aromatic and medicinal plants, particularly the therapeutic uses of cannabis derivatives.”

About the USMBA 

Aside from the 13 university facilities under its belt, the USMBA also boasts 58 research laboratories, 1,700 research professors and somewhere in the range of 4,000 doctoral students; likely more.

Currently, USMBA has established approximately 104 national conventions with the intention of introducing an additional 140 international conventions. 

Acknowledged as leaders in Morocco’s pharmaceutical industry, Laprophan laboratories have been working hard to explore various avenues of research and development across not only universities in Morocco, but also Europe. 

Numerous fields have already been invested in by the laboratory pioneers, such as galenics, molecular chemistry, physico-chemistry, pharmaco-toxicology, microbiology and research clinical.

As per the terms of this Moroccan cannabis partnership agreement, expert knowledge and insights into the biomedical research field will be fed by both parties.

An overview of Morocco’s cannabis bill 

At the beginning of March, the Moroccan government approved a law to permit the cultivation, export and consumption of cannabis for medicinal or industry use. 

Specifically, the bill authorized the approval of the “medical, cosmetic and industrial” use of cannabis. The bill was drafted by the interior ministry, which is headed by Abdelouafi Laftit.

The draft of Morocco’s cannabis bill is still awaiting discussion and validation from the Parliament. Should it be effectuated, farmers stand to reap the rewards and be protected “from drug trafficking networks.”