A year before Dr. Barry Sherman was murdered, he gave the green light to scientists at Apotex (his drug company) and the marijuana firm CannTrust, to create a cannabis pill. He and his investors knew that the pill would benefit people suffering from chronic pain, depression, anxiety, seizures, and post-traumatic stress disorder and that it would shake up Big Pharma. But that was Sherman. He was a visionary.


While it’s estimated that Health Canada’s approval of the new drug is still two years away, the “pot pill” is expected to provide people with an alternative to highly addictive opioids and other pharmaceuticals. It will also be one of Sherman’s greatest legacies.1

“Currently, medical marijuana is either smoked or ingested as an oil or an edible, often with uneven results. The concept Sherman threw his expertise behind was to standardize different levels of doses in pill form, using both the psychoactive and non-psychoactive elements of marijuana.

Sherman and others felt that pills or tablets with regulated dosages unique to individual patients would be a game-changer in the industry. If Health Canada grants permission, the pills will be dispensed at pharmacies with a doctor’s prescription.”2

CannTrust, established in 2014, is the brainchild of brothers Eric and Norman Paul, who are both pharmacists and entrepreneurs. Currently, CannTrust sells oils, drops, and dried marijuana for smoking to those with a medical marijuana license from the government. However, with their pharmacy background, the brothers believed that “the future of medical marijuana lay in pills that would deliver relief for six to eight hours,”3 because smoking could only provide short-term relief.


CannTrust believes their non-psychoactive CBD might help with:

  • depression
  • seizures
  • nausea and anxiety
  • as well as potential “antitumoral” benefits

And that the psychoactive properties of THC could help with:

  • PTSD
  • chemo-induced nausea
  • act as an appetitive stimulant
  • and relieve pain and inflammation.

Because some of the pills will have “different levels of THC, some CBD, and some both,”4 clinical trials will need to be run. Right now, scientists at Apotex are currently working on unique dosage formats.

The investigation into the death of the couple is ongoing with the Toronto police now calling it a “targeted double homicide.”5 We hope the investigation can wrap soon and allow the family to put their loved ones to rest.

Sources and References

  1. The Star, March 25, 2018.
  2. The Star, March 25, 2018.
  3. The Star, March 25, 2018.
  4. The Star, March 25, 2018.
  5. The Star, March 25, 2018.