Stay up-to-date with the latest in the world of psychedelics with our weekly news roundup for week 7 of 2023. Read about the latest research, policy updates, and industry developments in the rapidly growing field of psychedelic science.
Psychedelics promote neuroplasticity through the activation of intracellular 5-HT2A receptors
The ability of psychedelics to help grow neurons in the brain has been linked to their therapeutic effects. However, it is not yet clear why some compounds that activate serotonin 2A receptors (5-HT2ARs) promote neuroplasticity, while others do not. In this study, researchers used molecular and genetic tools to show that intracellular 5-HT2ARs are responsible for the plasticity-promoting effects of psychedelics. This explains why serotonin does not have the same effect. The study highlights the importance of location bias in 5-HT2AR signaling, identifies intracellular 5-HT2ARs as a potential therapeutic target, and suggests that serotonin may not be the natural substance that activates these receptors in the brain.
Psychedelic drugs can help our brain grow and change by activating certain receptors called serotonin 2A receptors. But scientists are still trying to understand exactly how this happens. New research suggests that the activation of certain receptors inside our brain cells is what helps these drugs work, but it might not be the natural substance that usually activates those receptors. Overall, this research could help us better understand how these drugs can be used to treat depression and other mental health conditions.
Virtual reality plus psychedelics are being trialled in therapy
Australian researchers conducted a study on psychedelics and their effects on participants at a retreat in the Netherlands. Participants consumed psilocybin, the active ingredient in magic mushrooms, and later put on VR headsets to enter a virtual reality world filled with stars. They used the stars as audio recording devices to reflect on their experiences during the peak of their trip.
The audio recordings created a constellation representing their experience, which participants accessed the following day to make sense of their journey. In the VR world, participants could choose to nourish certain stars and let go of others by burning them in a virtual bonfire or planting them to grow into trees.
Seelos Therapeutics Announced Enrolment Completion of of its Phase II/III Trial of SLS-005
Seelos Therapeutics has announced the enrolment completion of 160 participants with either familial or sporadic ALS in a double-blind placebo-controlled trial. The trial will last 24 weeks and Seelos expects to deliver the data in the second half of 2023. 70 patients will be enrolled ina 24 week, open-label study to evaluate SLS-005 in persons with ALS who do not qualify for other ongoing clinical trials.
The HEALEY ALS Platform Trial is a perpetual multi-center, multi-regimen clinical trial evaluating the safety and efficacy of investigational products for the treatment of ALS. This trial is designed as a perpetual platform trial. This means that there is a single Master Protocol dictating the conduct of the trial. The HEALEY ALS Platform Trial Master Protocol is registered as NCT04297683.
PharmAla Biotech Has Completed an Agreement to Sell a Shipment of its GMP LaNeo MDMA to Emyria Ltd.
Following TGA Australia’s news PharmAla Biotech, the only publicly-traded company currently manufacturing and exporting clinical-grade MDMA, completed an agreement to sell a shipment of its GMP LaNeo MDMA to Emyria Ltd. The company has also submitted a trademark application for ‘LaNeo’ in Australia.
“Forward-looking companies are already moving to supply their clinical operations following the TGA’s regulatory change that will take effect on July 1st. While this is a nascent industry, we are committed to responsibly supplying our customers as they develop operational capacity,” said Nick Kadysh, CEO of PharmAla Biotech.
Awakn Life Sciences Corp Announced the Opening of Their Second Clinic in Norway.
Awakn announced the opening of a second clinic in Norway in addition to two clinics in the UK. Awakn Clinics Trondheim is a 3-treatment room clinic is part of the second stage of Awakn’s Nordic expansion plans. The company announced last November of a move to a larger premises for its Oslo clinic, which is scheduled for Q2 2023.
There has been Tremendous support for ketamine to be utilized more as a treatment for mental health conditions in Norway. Lars Lien, leader of the Norwegian Psychiatric Association, wrote an editorial in Norway’s most popular paper to urge the health department to expedite the process.
“We are delighted to open our second clinic in Norway and our fourth clinic overall. Our goal as a company is to provide our breakthrough therapeutics to the vast number of people who are in desperate need of a new and more effective treatment option. Our new clinic in Trondheim does exactly this and allows us to provide these treatments to a whole new cohort of people in central Norway.” said Anthony Tennyson, Awakn’s CEO
Filamental Health Anoounced Second Psilocybin Supply Agreement With The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
FILAMENT HEALTH, a clinical-stage natural psychedelic drug development company, has announced that it has signed a second agreement to supply the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) with its botanical psilocybin drug candidate, PEX010. CAMH, one of the world’s leading research centres and Canada’s largest mental health teaching hospital, will conduct a clinical trial to study the effects of psilocybin for the treatment of amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), which has been approved by Health Canada.
Individuals diagnosed with aMCI face a greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia. Currently, there is no effective treatment available to prevent the progression from aMCI to AD. However, psilocybin presents a new and innovative approach to stimulating synaptogenesis in the early stages, potentially serving as a countermeasure against neurodegeneration.
Psychedelic Market Update – February 13th – 17th
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