I had the pleasure of interviewing Richard Clark Kaufman, PhD, Founder and Chief Science Officer of NanoSphere Health Sciences. Dr. Kaufman is the inventor on record for his company’s patented lipid nanoparticle “NanoSphere Delivery System”.
Tell us a bit about your background — What is your “backstory”?
During the 1980’s I co-directed the Center for Biogerontology, the first life-extension medical clinic in America. During my tenure I developed a series of anti-aging life extension products for patients, the public and health practitioners. Over next 25 years I created treatment programs and formulated of 150 innovative products for health-care practitioners, dietary supplement and nutraceutical companies and the lay public. I realized that that the majority of commercially sold supplements and nutraceuticals did not work as advertised. Over 85% of the ingredients in pills and capsules were not absorbed and excreted. That led to me exploring the advanced drug systems under development for making pharmaceuticals safer, more effective. It motivated me to create the NanoSphere Delivery System of adjustable smart lipid nanoparticles and a scalable, cost effect method for manufacturing. It’s a cookie cutter system of Nano encapsulating and delivering bioactive compounds including cannabinoids with greater bioavailability and bioactivity.
Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that happened to you since you started your company?
One of the funniest things happened in July of this year in Nashville at the Frost and Sullivan 2018 Technology Innovation Awards ceremony. After receiving our company’s award for nanoencapsulation at this gala black-tie event, I was called back to the stage. I received another award. Best Dressed Male. I was speechless.
What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
We stand out in the cannabis industry because we are biotech company and leader in lipid nanoparticle delivery. NanoSphere Health Sciences has divisions for cannabinoids, pharmaceuticals, nutraceuticals, cosmeceuticals and animal health. We are on the only company in the world with two patents covering both the manufacturing and delivery of lipid nanoparticles containing cannabinoids with increased bioavailability and therapeutic activity.
We are a science driven. Our company entered the cannabis industry after discovering in the lab our NanoSphere Delivery System platform could make the best, most advanced and potent cannabis products for medical use and recreation. Learning about and observing the significantly increased potency of our THC-containing nanoparticles was eye opening.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
First and foremost, my parents who supported my indulgences, success and failures.
For my recent success I am forever grateful to Robert Sutton, my close friend and Chairman of NanoSphere Health Sciences. In 2013, Bob was looking to start a new business. During an office visit at his physician Dr. Terry Grossman’s wellness clinic, Bob saw a bottle of “NanoSphere Resveratrol” on a side shelf. He asked what it was. Terry said a new nanoparticle technology for delivering nutraceuticals from the mouth directly into the bloodstream. I was flown into Denver and we formed NanoSphere Health Sciences. Bob is a brilliant businessman and humanitarian. He spearheaded the investing of over $6,000,000 in developing our NanoSphere delivery biotechnology and commercializing our company as leader in nanoparticle delivery products and being publicly traded.
Are you working on any exciting projects now?
Yes, we are. We are currently working on our intranasal nose–to-brain (N2B) delivery system platform. Our smart nanoparticle rapidly delivers NanoSphere encapsulated cannabinoids as well as pharmaceuticals directly from the nasal cavity to the brain in minutes. N2B bypasses the highly restrictive blood-brain barrier. This is a game changer for medical and recreational cannabis products. We are testing our award-winning Evolve “NanoSerumtm” a transdermal THC/CBD analgesic nanogel as an alternative to opioids.
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?
My lifelong commitment to developing healthcare, wellness and anti-aging products have touched the lives of millions. Throughout my sphere of influence, I have worked at empowering people to take personal responsibility in their lives and actions for doing positive good and not negative destruction. Amidst the growing levels of social injustice, environmental decline, political discord and random acts of violence bringing goodness that makes a measurable impact is rough.
Do you have a favorite book that made a deep impact on your life? Can you share a story?
Two books come to mind. The “Art of War” by Sun Tzu. It teaches me how to succeed in competitive situations with honor. Battles are won before the fighting begins. I wish could better apply its lessons during my MMA classes with an opponent that is bigger and better. Another equally impactful book is “The Mastery of Love” by Miguel Ruiz. It has taught how to get past my internal consciousness and overthinking to have loving relationships and be happy.
You likely have heard of the famous cliché that in a gold rush the one selling the shovels makes much more than the one who finds gold. This is the modern day “green rush”. Can you recommend to our readers 5 technologies or services that can potentially be lucrative “shovels” for the cannabis industry? Can you give an example for each?
First and foremost, in my gold rush list is our company and its award–winning patented NanoSphere delivery system of cannabinoids. Our disruptive biotechnology and new line of commercial products are improving how cannabis delivers benefits to every user. It always delivers precision-metered microliter dosages of cannabinoids with every use.
Other examples that come to mind include… better cannabinoid/terpene extraction and isolation systems, home grown cannabis cultivation systems, portable analyzers for better quality assurance and lastly blockchain-based banking solutions. I don’t pretend to be the Nostradamus of cannabis.
What 3 things would you advise to someone who wanted to emulate your career? Can you share an example for each idea?
I would advise them not to emulate or try to copy me. Figure out and utilize your own unique skills, gifts and talents in their career choices. Follow their hearts, Trust their instincts. And always remember “success is built upon a series of failures”.
What advice would you give to other CEOs or founders to help their employees to thrive?
I recommend creating a positive and supportive work environment for employees. Offer employees opportunities for growth, greater participation and a pathway to fulfill their dreams. Lastly listen to their suggestions.
Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why?
I would like to private meal with Dr. Raphael Mechoulam in Israel. He is the world’s leading cannabis expert and godfather of THC. Dr. Mechoulam isolated THC from the cannabis plant and discovered endocannabinoids. Imagine the wisdom and his insights one-on-one in a cafe in Israel.
Jilea Hemmings is the CEO & Co-Founder of Leaf Tyme. She is running a series on the latest innovations impacting the cannabis industry.