|Kwon Yong-hyun (second from left), president of the Korean Cannabinoid Association, explains a pilot project for conducting clinical trials into medical hemp, at the Press Center, central Seoul, Friday.|
The Korean Cannabinoid Association (KCA) announced its plan to launch a pilot project that would conduct clinical trials concerning cannabidiol (CBD), at a news conference in Seoul, Monday.
The KCA, formerly known as Organization of Legalizing Medical Cannabis in Korea, will conduct the project through Prasm, an AI-based decentralized bioinformatic network that uses blockchain technology.
“Due to the prejudice that hemp is a drug, Korean medical society had been reluctant to conduct any clinical studies that could prove the therapeutic benefits of medical hemp,” said Kwon Yong-hyun, director of Prasm and president of the KCA. “We are aware that the majority of the public is concerned about people abusing marijuana if it becomes legalized for medicinal use.”
The KCA hopes to dissolve such concern through its pilot project, Kwon added.
The association plans to record the patient's biometric information with wearable devices that use blockchain technology and make the proper prescription through the information obtained from such devices.
"The blockchain technology is suitable for managing medical hemp as the data cannot be altered while providing essential information about the patient’s condition," he said. "The platform will also be helpful in removing any concerns related to abuse of the treatment as it can keep track of the distribution without any omission.”
The group hopes that the pilot project will become the basis for legalizing medical hemp in Korea, he added.
Kwon also noted that the various medical institutions have already expressed interest in the pilot project.
If the pilot project receives approval from the authorities, the KCA plans to recruit patients with epilepsy. According to the Ministry of Health and Welfare, as of 2015, there are 137,760 epilepsy patients in Korea.