Weekly Psychedelic News – Week 8, 2023

Stay up-to-date with the latest in the world of psychedelics with our weekly news roundup for week 8 of 2023. Read about the latest research, policy updates, and industry developments in the rapidly growing field of psychedelic science.

Can psilocybin be an effective treatment for depression? Western Australia trial aims to find out

psilocybin magic mushrooms on the tanle

An Australian alternative drug company has obtained ethics approval to begin a clinical trial in Western Australia using psilocybin, the active ingredient in magic mushrooms, to treat depression. The trial will involve around 60 participants and will be conducted at Fiona Stanley Hospital in Perth. UWA Professor Sean Hood is the principal investigator of the trial, and each participant will receive two doses of 25 milligrams of the drug a month apart, followed by a comprehensive psychotherapy regime.

This trial, set to begin in mid-2023, is the first in Australia to utilize legally grown, pharmaceutical-grade psilocybin.

The use of psychedelic treatments such as psilocybin may be a final option for individuals with treatment-resistant mental illnesses.

In early February, MDMA and psilocybin was approved by TGA for medical use in Australia.

Within six months after approval, individuals with severe mental health issues will be able to receive prescriptions for the psychedelics MDMA and psilocybinThe Therapeutic Goods Administration approved the change after calls to reclassify the drugs, however, only authorized psychiatrists can prescribe them.

MDMA, commonly referred to as ecstasy or Molly, is a type of psychoactive substance that functions as a stimulant. It works by releasing certain chemicals in the brain, which leads to an increase in energy levels, heightened senses, and heightened emotions such as self-awareness and empathy.

Experts are exploring the potential benefits of MDMA through various trials. The goal is to find effective ways to conduct an MDMA-assisted therapy, particularly for patients suffering from PTSD. 

Utah bill proposing therapeutic use of magic mushrooms fails

A proposal for a pilot program in Utah that would have allowed therapeutic use of psychedelic mushrooms for thousands of patients failed to progress in the state Senate on Wednesday, effectively ending its chances of passing as the lawmakers prepare to adjourn for the year next week.

The Senate’s health and human services committee did not move the measure forward or reject it, with Republican leaders suggesting they needed more time to study the issue.

Even if the proposal had advanced for further discussion, it would have faced an “uphill battle” for passage this year, according to State Sen. Jake Anderegg, a Lehi Republican, based on his conversations with lawmakers.

Utah was one of several states across the political spectrum considering the use of psychedelic mushrooms this year. Supporters hoped that the success of the state’s medical marijuana regulations could persuade members of the Republican-supermajority statehouse to adopt a similar framework.

Vancouver sees a rise in magic mushroom stores, advocating for legalization

barbershop in Vancouver's English Bay neighbourhood has transformed into a mixed-use retail space, offering magic mushrooms for sale alongside haircuts.
Image source: Daily Hive Vancouver

A barbershop in Vancouver’s English Bay neighbourhood has transformed into a mixed-use retail space, offering magic mushrooms for sale alongside haircuts. Mushroom Cuts, which used to be a six-chair barbershop called Multi Culture Cuts, now includes a dispensary selling mushrooms and psilocybin products.

According to store manager Bryan Jacob, the business decided to pivot to different revenue streams during the COVID-19 pandemic and saw a big uptake in the mushroom and psilocybin market. Customers can access the dispensary by walking up a few stairs and through the barbershop’s glass doors.

Before the legalization of cannabis in Vancouver, more than 100 unlicensed dispensaries were operating in the city. However, advocates of psychedelic mushrooms do not expect them to gain the same level of popularity. This is due to the fact that a smaller percentage of Canadians have reported using psychedelics, with only about 40% having used cannabis in their lifetime.

Furthermore, the effects of psilocybin are self-limiting, meaning that they wear off quickly if used in rapid succession. Therefore, it is not possible for users to go on mushroom trips daily, unlike heavy cannabis users who may consume large amounts of flower every day.

The various subtypes of psychedelic experiences have consistent and predictable effects on symptoms of depression and anxiety

psilocybin mushrooms in the lab

According to the study, the subjective effects of psychedelic experiences can be categorized into reproducible and predictable subtypes that are associated with lasting improvements in mental health. These subtypes show significant differences in baseline demographic characteristics, measures of mental health, drug type, and dose. The study suggests that maximizing personal and mystical insight experiences associated with psychedelics may be crucial to optimizing the therapeutic benefits for patients in clinical settings.

Researchers collected data from almost 1,000 individuals who had previously used psilocybin, LSD, Ayahuasca, mescaline, peyote cactus, and/or 5-MeO-DMT. Using a machine learning analytic procedure called cluster analysis, the researchers identified specific subtypes of psychedelic experiences and their potential relationships to different mental health outcomes.

Participants were anonymous and had reported experiencing moderate to strong psychedelic effects in the past, which led to subsequent improvements in symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Psychedelic Market Update – February 20th – 24th

TickerCurrent PriceWeek To DateYear to Date

It’s been an interesting week for the psychedelic stock world this week. So far this year it’s been exciting news coming out with promising results and collaborations, however most psychedelic stocks took a dive this week. Let’s look into some of the news and how the market reacted.

PharmAla Biotech ($MDMA) announced the publication of a Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) application of 6 Novel Chemical Entities (NCEs). The application claims priority to United States provisional patent application filed on August 20, 2021. This PCT application may be used to reduce the known side effects of MDMA while retaining its effectiveness. The stock climbed 46% this week and is up 280% YTD.

“PharmAla has already established its manufacturing and regulatory prowess; our research team has also been working hard. Not only has PharmAla done extensive in-vivo preclinical research to validate our hypotheses around these molecular compositions, we have also been meeting with regulators to discuss moving into clinical trials. We look forward to disclosing the results of those meetings shortly,” said Dr Harpreet Kaur, Vice President of Research PharmAla Biotech

Cybin Inc. ($CYBN) The Toronto Based biopharmaceutical announced streamlining plan of clinical alignment focusing at maximizing the Company’s operating efficiency. The company also released 15% of its workforce whose roles were not directly involved with clinical trial initiatives. These changes will significantly reduce the company’s cash burn rate while the company continues focusing on all core clinical initiatives. The investors reacted positively to the news and the stock price jumped by almost 12%.

“The Company has made the prudent decision to evaluate every role within its workforce, including whether certain tasks could be performed more efficiently while ensuring that the Company’s core clinical activities continue to be robustly supported and resourced. We appreciate the significant contributions of our employees and the hard work they performed for the Company and understand the impact that this difficult decision has on them. We are committed to maintaining a lean organization and will continue to make clinical trial execution in support of our proprietary molecules our top priority” said Doug Drysdale, CEO of Cybin.

Breaking the Stigma: Psychedelic Subtypes Yield Consistent Depression and Anxiety Relief

Breaking the Stigma: Psychedelic Subtypes Yield Consistent Depression and Anxiety Relief

Optimizing personal and mystical insight experiences may be crucial in

What to Do After Ayahuasca: 7 Ways to Integrate

What to Do After Ayahuasca: 7 Ways to Integrate

Tips for taking care of yourself after ayahuasca

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