The psychedelics market is currently navigating a similar legal situation to the one the cannabis market found itself in for many years. Psychedelics are not legal for recreational use in Canada or the United States, yet medical research on the efficiency of such products may help reduce some of the stigma around them. In fact, some major developments have already begun to change the landscape for the better in this market. For example, earlier in 2019, the state of Colorado became the first state to decriminalize Magic Mushrooms (mushrooms containing psilocybin), taking the substance on a similar path to legalization as that of cannabis. Then, in November 2019, the FDA awarded the second Breakthrough Therapy designation to non-profit Usona Institute, which is studying the effects of psilocybin as an anti-depressant. Currently, despite the obstacles imposed by the legal status for such products, the psychedelic drugs market is expected to expand with a CAGR of 16.3%, reaching USD 6,859.95 Million by 2027, according to Data Bridge Market Research. Mydecine Innovations Group Inc. (OTC: MYCOF) (CSE: MYCO), Havn Life Sciences Inc. (OTC: HAVLF), Revive Therapeutics Ltd. (OTC: RVVTF), Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. (OTC: MMEDF), Hollister Biosciences Inc. (OTC: HSTRF)
In recent years, there has been a significant flow of new information describing the effects of psychedelic compounds on the brain. For instance, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences published data that helped explain that, under the influence of psilocybin, one of such active compounds often found in various types of mushrooms, the brain creates a feedback loop of neuron activity and neurotransmitter release (the chemical messengers that neurons use to communicate). According to the study, this provides an understanding of why psilocybin is showing considerable promise as a therapeutic intervention for neuropsychiatric disorders including depression, anxiety, and addiction. “Using this model will be crucial for truly understanding how psilocybin can rebalance neuropsychiatric disorders such as treatment-resistant depression and addiction,” Morten Kringlebach, the study’s first author and a senior research fellow at the University of Oxford, explained according to Inverse.
Mydecine Innovations Group Inc. (OTC: MYCOF) (CSE: MYCO) announced last week, “that it has completed its first commercial harvest of 20 kilograms of psilocybin mushrooms at its research and cultivation facility in Jamaica. The Company is now preparing to export the harvest to its Canadian cGMP Facility which has a Health Canada schedule 1 Dealer’s License attached to it, allowing for legal import.
‘We are pleased to announce the completion of our first commercial harvest of natural psilocybin mushrooms,’ said Joshua Bartch, CEO and Chairman of Mydecine. ‘There is more research needed on these compounds in order to better understand the entourage effect experienced by patients which has shown dramatically effective results compared to single-molecule synthetic psilocybin in preliminary studies. As the industry grows, the need for naturally occurring psilocybin and access to large quantities of these molecules will be paramount and we are excited to be the first to advance this movement at scale.’
Once received by the Company’s facility in Canada, the psilocybin mushrooms will be extracted, purified, and turned into a cGMP final product for controlled therapeutic purposes. Mydecine’s final product be made available for purchase by other licensed institutions and companies conducting clinical research into the efficacy of these compounds to treat various health conditions including anxiety, addiction, depression and PTSD. Portions of the harvest will also be used for Mydecine’s proprietary genetic, pharmacology, and clinical research. The clinical use will be for the studies and developing protocols of psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy to treat PTSD in veterans and other frontline workers.”
Havn Life Sciences Inc. (OTC: HAVLF) announced on December 14th, the first preclinical study to focus on the effects of psilocybin on the immune system, in partnership with Dr. Geoffrey Bove, Dr. David Mokler and Susan Chapelle, eMBA. The Company’s science division, Havn Research, is undertaking a study to determine if a single dose of psilocybin extract can impact the body’s inflammatory response and regulate the human immune system. Vic Neufeld, Executive Chairman of Havn Life stated: “We are tremendously excited about the potential to accelerate drug discovery and patient access to psilocybin based compounds. Upon completion of this initial phase, the Havn Life team will have taken the first step on its journey towards market authorization of new medicines. We intend to pursue the filing of an FDA application for psilocybin-based delivery methods, which may ultimately lead to new drug discovery. To date, minimal research has been done on psilocybin and its effects on human immunity, which is an area that has become more and more important.”
Revive Therapeutics Ltd. (OTC: RVVTF) announced on November 18th, it has entered into an exclusive research collaboration agreement with PharmaTher Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Newscope Capital Corporation and a specialty psychedelics pharmaceutical company, to accelerate the development of psilocybin in the treatment of cancer and the discovery of novel uses of undisclosed psychedelic compounds. “Revive continues to be focused on developing novel uses for psilocybin that leverages our proprietary oral thin film delivery technology as a differentiated therapeutic approach,” said Michael Frank, CEO of Revive. “We are excited to advance the development of PharmaTher’s recent discovery in the potential of psilocybin to treat certain cancers such as Liver Carcinoma, Melanoma, Breast Neoplasms, Kidney Neoplasms and Acute Myeloid Leukemia. We are also leveraging PharmaTher’s panaceAI™ discovery AI platform to discover new uses of undisclosed psychedelic compounds to be potentially used with our oral thin film delivery technology and expand our psychedelics drug pipeline.”
Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. (OTCQB: MMEDF) reported on November 24th, that it is establishing a digital medicine division known as Albert. Albert is in the process of assembling and recruiting a leading team of technologists, therapists, and clinical drug development experts to help the company research, develop and build an integrated technical platform and comprehensive toolset aimed at delivering psychedelic inspired medicines and experiential therapies combined with digital therapeutics. MindMed Co-Founder and Co-CEO J.R. Rahn said, “We believe that the next frontier in psychedelic medicine will be to quantify with great precision psychedelic assisted therapy’s impact on patient populations. This new division will not only build apps, technologies and other platforms to help the patient, but hopefully also make the medical community comfortable with this novel treatment paradigm for mental health and addiction by measuring the potential value to their patient populations and ultimate savings to insurers.”
Hollister Biosciences Inc. (OTC: HSTRF) announced on June 4th, that the Company’s 100% owned subsidiary, AlphaMind Brands Inc. (“AlphaMind”) plans to launch medicinal mushroom based capsule and powder product lines. The initial product line will consist of a blended and bottled powder and capsule consisting of powdered cordyceps, lion’s mane, oyster, reishi and shiitake medicinal mushroom varietals. The formulations for both products are unique and developed through research driven initiatives. The health benefits that the capsules and powder intend to provide include but are not limited to anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-aging, anti-microbial and immune system support. Dr. Nikos Apostolopoulos, CSO of AlphaMind shared, “Our AlphaMind five mushroom blend will be a game changer for both athletes and non-athletes alike. This ethically sourced and organically grown blend provides potent antioxidants, and anti-inflammatory responses, helping to improve and maximize performance as well as daily activities.”
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