GW Pharmaceuticals shares soar amid results for epilepsy treatment

A cannibanoid medecine manufactured by GW Pharmaceuticals.
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A cannibanoid medecine manufactured by GW Pharmaceuticals.

Shares of GW Pharmaceuticals surged nearly 12 percent Monday amid positive trial results for its drug Epidiolex.

The drug is a treatment option for people with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, a rare and severe form of childhood-onset epilepsy. In the trial, when patients added Epidiolex to their current treatment regimen, they found a drop in the frequency of monthly seizures, according to the report.

Lennox-Gastaut syndrome affects about 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 100,000 children, usually ages 3 to 5, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

"We believe that this result further demonstrates that Epidiolex offers the potential to be a new effective therapy within the field of treatment-resistant childhood-onset epilepsies," GW Pharma CEO Justin Gover said in the report.

This trial report follows the announcement in March of positive results in a phase three trial of Epidiolex for the treatment of Dravet syndrome, a rare form of epilepsy that begins in infancy.

Epidiolex was given orphan status from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of Lennox-Gastaut in 2014 and Dravet syndrome in 2013.

The biopharmaceutical company plans to submit a new drug application with the FDA in the first half of 2017, the company said.

GW's stock has skyrocketed this year, rising more than 42 percent.

GW 2016 Chart