VICTORIA, British Columbia, Sept. 20, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Emerald Health Therapeutics Inc. (EHT) (TSXV:EMH) (OCTQX:EMHTF), a Canadian licensed medical producer of cannabis, is pleased to report that members of its scientific advisory team have made a novel discovery highlighting the potential of tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), a naturally occurring non-psychotropic cannabinoid, to treat Huntington’s disease and other metabolic, neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory diseases. These results were published in the British Journal of Pharmacology in a peer-reviewed article entitled, “Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid is a potent PPARγ agonist with neuroprotective activity.”

This recent article in the British Journal of Pharmacology focused on the activity of Δ9-THCA, one of the most common cannabinoids (and a non-psychotropic precursor of THC), on PPARγ. PPARγ signalling has a role in neuroinflammation and epilepsy. Δ9-THCA is a potent PPARγ agonist and in this study exhibited neuroprotective and anti-neuroinflammatory activity in an animal model of Huntington´s disease.

This research was conducted at Instituto Maimónides de Investigación Biomédica de Córdoba (IMIBIC). Co-authors of this paper included EHT scientific advisory board members Eduardo Muñoz, MD, PhD, Professor of Immunology at University of Córdoba; Giovanni Appendino, PhD, Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry at University of Eastern Piedmont; and Gaetano Morello, ND, clinician, Complex Chronic Disease Program, BC Women’s Hospital.

“A large number of patients suffer from neurodegenerative diseases and they are not responsive to available medical treatments. Our research data provide further evidence that cannabinoids hold therapeutic potential for a wide range of diseases and conditions, including neurodegeneration, which represents a significant unmet medical need,” said Eduardo Muñoz, PhD, EHP’s Chief Scientific Officer, Professor of Immunology at the University of Córdoba, and corresponding author of the paper.

“It is very encouraging to see the successful effort of Drs. Muñoz and Appendino, who stand in a small circle of international scientific pioneers who have worked on cannabinoid research for well over a decade. We applaud their ground-breaking research on THCA and being published in this leading pharmacology journal,” said Frey Garabagi, PhD, Vice President of R&D of EHT. “We are pleased to be one of the first and few companies to offer THCA cannabis oil and look forward to generating human data from clinical research we are planning for this product in the near future.”

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About Emerald Health Therapeutics Inc.

Emerald Health Therapeutics, Inc. (TSXV:EMH) (OTCQX:EMHTF) operates primarily through Emerald Health Botanicals Inc. ("Botanicals"), a wholly owned subsidiary and Licensed Producer under the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations. Botanicals is authorized to produce and sell both dried medical cannabis flower and medical cannabis oil in Canada. Botanicals currently operates an indoor facility in Victoria, BC, and is progressing on expansion plans for a 32-acre property in Metro Vancouver and a joint venture with Village Farms, called Pure Sunfarms, utilizing a 25 acre existing greenhouse complex in Delta, BC. Botanicals is one of Canada's most medically focused licensed producers, with a team highly experienced in life sciences product development and large-scale agribusiness. Its vision is to be a leading provider of cannabis products through its production capabilities, proprietary genetics, value-added products and branding, and superb customer experience. Emerald Health Therapeutics is part of the Emerald Health group, which comprises multiple companies advancing diverse botanical, nutraceutical and pharmaceutical products that may provide wellness and medical benefits by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system.

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Cautionary Statements Regarding Forward Looking Information

Certain statements in this press release constitute forward-looking statements, within the meaning of applicable securities laws.  All statements that are not historical facts, including without limitation, statements regarding future estimates, plans, programs, forecasts, projections, objectives, assumptions, expectations or beliefs of future performance, are "forward-looking statements".

We caution you that such "forward-looking statements" involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual and future events to differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.

Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to legalization of non-therapeutic cannabis sales in Canada; participation in the legalized non-therapeutic cannabis industry; growth in the extract-based market; increased production of cannabis; commercial operations; construction or conversion of production facilities; applications for licensing; obtaining such licenses; commencement of production of cannabis at the Company’s facilities; estimates of production capacity at such facilities; contributions of cash to the JV; international opportunities for the Company; commencement of clinical trials; the Company becoming a leading Canadian supplier of cannabis products; expected timing of any of the above matters; and other information that is based on forecasts of future results, estimates of amounts not yet determinable and assumptions of management.

Emerald Health Therapeutics Inc. does not intend, and does not assume any obligation, to update these forward-looking statements except as required by law. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties relating to, among other things, failure of the federal government to approve legislation legalizing sales of non-therapeutic adult-use cannabis; failure to obtain Health Canada and other regulatory approvals; failure to obtain necessary financing; results of production and sale activities; the Company's historical experience with medical marijuana operations; results of scientific research; uninsured risks; regulatory changes; difficulties in construction or in obtaining qualified contractors to complete construction or conversion of facilities; availability of production facilities; timeliness of government approvals and the granting of permits and licenses; changes in prices and costs; actual operating and financial performance of facilities; equipment and processes relative to specifications and expectations; as well as the other risk factors set out in the Company’s annual information form and other filing with the applicable Canadian securities regulators, which may be viewed at Actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements.