Brazilian health authorities will remove cannabidiol, a marijuana derivative, from a list of banned substances. Cannabidiol is prescribed by neurologists and psychiatrists and has a range of therapeutic benefits. Studies have showed the substance could help patients suffering from a range of illnesses including epilepsy and alcoholism.
Last month, Brasilia permitted prescriptions for cannabidiol while stopping short of making it generally available over the counter (OTC). Health watchdog Anvisa found that there is no evidence that the medicine is addictive.
Anvisa chairman Renato Porto stressed that the decision did not mean any softening of Brazil's stance on other cannabis derivatives, which still remain banned.