Clinical trials

Pharma starting to see green with cannabis

Photo of lab technician holding up flask of liquid
Sativex, a cannabinoid medicine made by GW Pharmaceuticals, is a multiple sclerosis drug recently approved for the French market. Photo: BSIP/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

The pharmaceutical industry is gingerly placing more bets on developing drugs with cannabis — but, absent federal legalization, drugmakers are limited in their ability to conduct clinical trials or R&D.

What they're saying: “The doctor is the gatekeeper of the patient’s health,” said John Taenzler, an independent cannabis market researcher. But “pharma’s got their hands tied.”

Dassault Systemes buying Medidata in $5.8 billion deal

Dassault Systemes CEO Bernard Charles speaks behind a podium.
Dassault Systemes CEO Bernard Charles. Photo: Vincent Isore/IP3/Getty Images

Dassault Systemes, a French maker of industrial software and technology, is buying New York-based health data provider Medidata in a deal worth $5.8 billion.

The bottom line: Medidata registered a $52 million profit last year on $636 million of revenue, but Dassault is betting that more pharmaceutical and medical device companies will use Medidata's software to help their products clear clinical trials. More than 1,000 health care companies already use Medidata for clinical trial work.