Mentor Capital was first drawn to invest in the cannabis industry because it stimulates appetite and reduces nausea in cancer patients giving them extra strength to handle their other treatments.
Additionally, early research indicates that cannabis may both promote apoptosis, the orderly cell death of aberrant cancer cells, and inhibit metastasis. Even more evident is the immediate calming effect of medical marijuana in the treatment of persons afflicted with MS, seizures or Parkinson’s disease. Glaucoma patients also find reduction of intraocular pressure when using medical marijuana. Importantly, chronic pain may be mitigated by cannabis use without the more addictive and troublesome side effects from the opiate family.
In considering medical use, it is important to note that, in simplified terms, there are two basic active components of medical marijuana: CBD and THC. THC is the better known psycho-active component. CBD, on the other hand, is not psycho-active, yet carries many of the medical benefits.
Adult use of marijuana may be compared to drinking beer, except that cannabis is about half as addictive and is calming rather than agitating.
Rather than becoming more prone to beer fueled fighting, drunk driving and risk taking, cannabis users become more mellow, laid back and drive slower. We also find there are fewer health risks from light or heavy cannabis use than there are for corresponding light or heavy alcohol use. Similarly, the claim that smoking marijuana is highly carcinogenic relative to cigarettes does not stand up to our scrutiny.
An interesting related observation is that people seem to get high during any particular session mostly with THC or mostly with alcohol, each costing about $7. Where Cannabis is legalized, there does not seem to be an overall increase in the total incidence of intoxication. Because of this substitution effect, societal shifting to cannabis from alcohol actually would seem to increase overall societal health.
Another unexpected benefit is cutting out illegal drug dealers who are motivated to introduce illegal marijuana users to stronger drugs to turn a larger profit. Having the low risk alternative of legal cannabis sales corresponds to lower usage, we expect, of more addictive drugs. We further wonder at the current large societal cost of associated incarceration for reasonable relaxed social use, not dissimilar to an after work martini. If these legal proscriptions change, it seems reasonable to project that the $50 Billion marijuana market should not be difficult to meld into the rubric of our society in a similar, responsible, adult-focused way to how we address the larger $400 Billion national alcoholic beverage market.
We voice these opinions because social use of cannabis parallels the medical use that is Mentor Capital’s preferred focus. As a result of this close association, Mentor Capital finds itself naturally investing in both sides of that same cannabis coin.
Leading-edge cancer companies were Mentor Capital’s historic focus especially in the field of cancer immunotherapy.
Mentor has some continued legacy investments in this area and is pleased that we will continue to be involved with the cancer field. This because medical cannabis reduces nausea and increases appetite in cancer patients so they have the strength to continue their treatments. The switch from cancer to cannabis occurred because the leading-edge breakthroughs were expensive in large part because of the $500 million or more FDA trials that were required. When the government became more involved with health care and then said they were not going to reimburse expensive new cancer treatments, this sector collapsed. (e.g. The leading cancer immunotherapy stock went from $44/sh to $3/sh). As a result, Mentor Capital looked for cancer related investment with profit potential and found that the growing medical marijuana field needed funding. On investigation, Mentor concluded that cannabis investments could not only help save cancer patients’ live, but also was in an sector that was rapidly expanding.
Because Mentor Capital is the creator and original author of the Cancer Immunotherapy Index, Mentor will continue to update that index on a quarterly basis. Mentor Capital has a tracking investment only in most of these cancer companies. Regardless, for at least a transition period, all cancer companies will be listed in the Mentor Capital portfolio, so that investors that have followed the Cancer Index for years will be able to click through to reference the component cancer companies easily. Although some featured portfolio cancer companies have a slightly larger residual position, the holdings in the non-featured cancer companies were reduced to as small as possible so as not to lose money as that market contracted.