Marijuana-based drug gets positive review from US agency

FILE - In this June 17, 2015 file photo, medical marijuana plants grow at LifeLine Labs in Cottage Grove, Minn. When U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions green-lighted federal prosecutors to pursue violators of federal marijuana laws, not only states that legalized recreational pot are at risk of a crackdown, but so is most of the rest of America. All but four states allow some form of medical marijuana, even Sessions' home state of Alabama. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health officials say a closely watched medicine made from the marijuana plant significantly reduces seizures in children with severe forms of epilepsy and warrants approval in the country.

The Food and Drug Administration posted its review Tuesday of the experimental medication ahead of a public meeting later this week.

British drugmaker GW Pharmaceuticals is seeking approval to sell its purified form of an ingredient found in cannabis — one that doesn't get users high — as a medication for hard-to-treat seizures in children. If successful, the company's liquid formula would be the first government-approved drug derived from the cannabis plant in the U.S.

A greenlight for the medicine could also spur new pharmaceutical research and interest into other cannabis-based products.

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