Tetra Bio-Pharma Inc (CVE:TBP) (OTCMKTS:TBPMF) (FRA:JAM1) CEO Guy Chamberland discusses the company’s hemp protein drinks. Currently, Tetra Bio-Pharma is producing hemp-based drinks without CBD, which have been approved by Health Canada. However, once CBD is legal, Tetra intends to offer infused-hemp protein beverages. Chamberland reveals the company is positioning its beverages in stores ahead of legalization as a way of leveraging the company’s scientific expertise to generate profit while working on other health and wellness formulations. Tetra Bio-Pharma is currently developing and bringing to market pain relief products based on cannabis and cannabinoid research.
Narrator: Tetra Bio-Pharma is a biopharmaceutical company focused on cannabinoid-based drug discovery and development aimed at drugs and treatments to patients and their health care providers.
The company has several subsidiaries that are engaged in the development of biopharmaceuticals and natural health products containing cannabis and other medicinal plant-based elements.
Tetra Bio-Pharma is listed on the TSX Venture and trades under the ticker symbol TBP.
James West: [laughter] I guess we’ll be speaking to him a little bit later on. Ed, are you the CEO of Tetra Bio-Pharma? Did you change your name to Guy Chamberland?
Ed Milewski: Yeah, I changed my name.
James West: Okay. We’re confused out here now; we know it’s Friday, but April 1st is a ways away. What the hell is going on?
Ed Milewski: What happened?
James West: I don’t know. I assumed that usually we do that –
Ed Milewski: This is a blooper.
James West: That was a blooper. Now we’re doing live bloopers now. [laughter] There we go. We’re starting to write bloopers. Ah! There he is. Okay. Coming in via Skype. Boy. Hi Guy, how are you? Guy? Is it Guy or Guy?
Guy Chamberland: Very good.
James West: Thank you.
Guy Chamberland: Guy.
James West: Guy, okay, I apologize for that. So Guy, it’s been a while since we’ve had you on the show. Have we had you on the show before?
Guy Chamberland: Yes you have, twice.
James West: Okay. I apologize, I’m out to lunch here today. So, February 18th you announced that Hemp Energy drink cans are now available in 59 grocery stores and convenience stores in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan. Now, are those cannabis-infused drinks?
Guy Chamberland: No they’re not, they’re just hemp protein products.
James West: Hemp, okay. But, so hemp with zero content of CBD, just out of curiosity?
Guy Chamberland: Well, currently, yes. That’s based on the current regulations. But when the product gets approved by Health Canada, our marketing approval for it, the day that CBD becomes legal into a food product, we’ll be able to obviously proceed with a partner and create this type of a drink.
James West: Yeah, perfect. Okay, so we’re looking at October 17th this year, according to the Federal government?
Guy Chamberland: Yeah, if they stay on track, yes.
James West: Yeah. Great, okay, so tell me: how has Tetra Bio-Pharma been elbowing its way into market share in this crowded cannabis space?
Guy Chamberland: Well, for us, we’re, I mean, we obviously monitor what happens in the cannabis space, but we’re basically behaving and trying to develop all of our products as pharmaceutical drugs, so we work more in the pharmaceutical space. Our raw material is, obviously, cannabis, and the fact we do clinical trials with cannabis products, I gotta say, we kind of spent some time in the cannabis space, but we’re more of a pharma than we are of a cannabis company.
James West: I see. So you’re basically positioning yourself in stores and on shelves in stores, in anticipation of legalization of cannabis as an ingredient in consumer packaged goods like drinks?
Guy Chamberland: Well, that’s our Tetra Natural Health company. So our Tetra Natural Health company is a subsidiary of the pharma, and we created that company to generate some revenues while we’re basically investing in the development of cannabinoid drugs. So we’re more like a GW Pharma-type company, the Tetra Bio-Pharma side, and our Tetra Natural Health division is going to leverage our scientific and regulatory expertise of trying to generate revenue under the natural health product and, say, the cannabis regulations for the company.
James West: Oh, interesting. So you say, compared to GW Pharma; are you developing pharmaceutical drugs alongside your natural health products?
Guy Chamberland: That’s correct. Our main focus is mainly developing drugs; we have several. We have some ocular THC-based eye drops, we have some other cannabinoids as well for treating painful dry eye. We’re going after several other ocular diseases. We have a topical product. We have several inhalation products that we’re approved by the FDA and same thing in Europe. So we’re basically trailblazing behind GW, and going to be bringing these drugs to the market in, well, hopefully in the coming years.
James West: Sure. Okay, what is your, what is the leading flagship sort of drug in development now that will be hitting the market soonest, do you think?
Guy Chamberland: Well, the soonest will probably be a race between two products: what we had called our PP01 product, and our PP02 are the first two products that we had planned to bring as drugs to the market. The PP02 product is basically a sustained relieve cuticle tablet of THC that’s designed for going after the opioid-sparing market; so that one, we’re looking at, it’s through a special regulatory path in the USA called the 505V2, where we kind of leverage the fact that dronabinol and marinol are recognized as safe drugs in the USA. So kind of piggyback on the regulatory to go faster to the market for a drug approval.
So that’s going to be one to watch this year, as well as, well, PP01, we have announced earlier this year that we had discovered a microtoxin impurity in our drug substance, which is basically the cannabis raw material, so now we’ve been working with Health Canada to kind of define very safe levels – so basically, microtoxin-free cannabis product. And then this program eventually is going to take back off, and basically that’s when we’re completing our clinical development to bring this product as a drug to the market.
During the whole time in the last, I guess, 2017, 2018, we completed four clinical trials in humans, with cannabis or cannabinoid-based drugs, and that’s given us a very, very, how could I say, extensive knowledge of the safety, the pharmacokinetics and the pharmacodynamics of cannabis, how it works in humans, and it led us to filing a patent application so that we protect the composition of matter, even some fabrication process for one of our drugs. And with that, we’re starting to accelerate the development of some of our second-generation inhalation, so we’re going to be targeting other modes of delivery, trying to replace the smoked, say, cannabis-type product.
Today we know the difference between, say, a smoked cannabis, a vaporized cannabis, and an oral. So we’ve been able to generate all of that clinical research. We’ve also completed our Phase II trial with the cannabis oils, using three different ratios…CBD and cancer, and non-cancer chronic pain patients. And now we’ll be analyzing this data with our partners at McGill and Sante Cannabis, and hopefully we’ll get a lot more insight into what ratio of THC/CBD is very effective in pain control (inaudible) help us basically continue our other programs in pain development.
But we’re basically going to remain a pharma that develops pain products based on cannabis or cannabinoid molecule.
James West: Hmm. Wow, that’s incredible. So, as a, you know, somebody who’s following in the footsteps of GW Pharma, that suggests you’re very well priced right now. Why is the market not sort of giving you the premium that, you know, that GW Pharma enjoyed in its development stage, in your opinion?
Guy Chamberland: I think one of the probably reasons is, when Tetra Bio-Pharma started, it was in 2014, it was as a licensed producer applicant. So a lot of our shareholders probably came in thinking we would be going down the licensed producer path, and when we took the different turn in about mid-2016, obviously these shareholders, you know, stayed, because their price had gone from $0.05 to, I think, over $0.60 or $0.70. So they’re already seeing a relatively nice pickup.
But I think as we moved forward, a lot of our shareholders that were early on, didn’t really understand what we’re doing, and they kind of, you know, watching the LPs blow up and wondering probably why we’re not going up. And the day we do get close to success with a drug, I think that a lot of people are going to be surprised by, you know, the swing that you get when you get close to drug approval.
And we don’t have a very good institutional base either, so it’s more of a retail stock right now.
James West: Interesting. All right, Guy, well, that’s a great update on the company. I wish you the best of luck, and we’re going to continue to monitor Tetra Bio-pharma. Thanks for joining me today.
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