Psychedelic treatments, such as psilocybin could significantly alter the way modern medicine addresses mental health. “I think that psychedelic medicines offer a new paradigm in mental health,” MindMed’s co-founder and co-CEO JR Rahn told Yahoo Finance. “Traditional medicines that are treating things like depression, addiction, and anxiety really are seeking to numb and mask the issues that surround these illnesses. So, things like Xanax, while they might make you feel better, they can also be highly addictive and are not dealing with the underlying problem.”
In addition to those issues, researchers have also begun to dive into psilocybin and its potential impact on issues such as weight loss and obesity. After all, psilocybin reportedly activates serotonin receptors, or "nature's own appetite suppressant," as noted by Psychology Today. "This powerful brain chemical curbs cravings and shuts off appetite. It makes you feel satisfied even if your stomach is not full. The result is eating less and losing weight." If it can help, such a treatment could help the millions of people around the world with weight issues. Such stories could create big opportunity for companies such as Better Plant Sciences Inc. (CSE:PLNT)(OTC:VEGGF), Cybin Inc. (NEO:CYBN), Field Trip Health Ltd. (CSE:FTRP)(OTC:FTRPF), Mind Medicine Inc. (OTC:MMEDF), and COMPASS Pathways (NASDAQ:CMPS).
Better Plant Sciences Inc. (CSE:PLNT) (OTC:VEGGF) BREAKING NEWS: Better Plant Sciences Inc. is pleased to announce that its majority owned subsidiary NeonMind Biosciences Inc. has now commenced a psilocybin preclinical trial examining psilocybin as a potential treatment to promote and cause weight loss and to reduce food cravings after obtaining Health Canada approval. The Trial is being conducted by the University of British Columbia pursuant to a fee for service agreement.
“We are thrilled to be moving forward with our preclinical trial,” said Penny White, CEO of Better Plant. “We plan to use the data from this trial to support our pending patents and to help inform the protocol development for a Phase 2 human trial.”
NeonMind has filed 4 US provisional patent applications covering the use of psilocybin and other psychedelic substances to promote and cause weight loss, reduce food cravings, treat compulsive eating disorder, improve quality of diet, treat or regulate obesity-associated diabetes, treat obesity-associated abnormal regulation of blood glucose and aid in the prevention of heart disease, high blood pressure and other obesity-associated illnesses. Its first psilocybin and weight loss related patent was filed in December 2019.
“Psilocybin is known to activate serotonin receptors,” says Dr. William Panenka, scientific advisor to NeonMind. “As a neurotransmitter, serotonin helps to relay messages from one area of the brain to another. Serotonin is responsible for some of the drivers which govern eating. We are very interested in furthering studies to test various dosing and timing regimens for NeonMind to see the effects that psilocybin may have on the regulation of food cravings, weight loss, and glucose-insulin metabolism.”
Obesity has been formally recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a global epidemic, with at least 2.8 million people dying each year as a result of being overweight or obese. The WHO reported that in 2016, more than 1.9 billion adults, 18 years and older, were overweight.
Other related developments from around the markets include:
Cybin Inc. (NEO:CYBN) is excited to announce that Cybin Inc., a leading Toronto-based biotech and life sciences company focused on psychedelic pharmaceutical therapies, has made its debut on the global public markets. Cybin is now trading on the NEO Exchange under the symbol NEO:CYBN. The Company recently closed a CDN$45 million subscription receipt financing in relation to its reverse takeover transaction, which marked the largest subscription receipt financing in the Canadian psychedelic sector. The Company focuses on psychedelic drug development, unique delivery mechanisms, improved novel compounds, and protocols that target psychiatric and neurological conditions.
Field Trip Health Ltd. (CSE:FTRP)(OTC:FTRPF), one of the leaders in the development and delivery of psychedelic therapies, announced that it is in advanced stages of identifying potential sites for Field Trip Health centers to treat people in Oregon with psilocybin therapies following the passage of Measure 109. Measure 109, which was approved by voters in Oregon on November 3, 2020, requires the Oregon Health Authority to create a licensing system that will create a regulated program for the cultivation of psilocybin-producing mushrooms and the provision of supervised psilocybin therapy, effectively creating the first legal market for psilocybin therapies in North America.
Mind Medicine Inc. (OTC:MMEDF), a leading psychedelic medicine biotech company, has received a positive response on its protocol design for a Phase 2a clinical trial evaluating microdoses of LSD in the treatment of adult ADHD from the Swiss and Dutch health authorities. MindMed has also successfully submitted a pre-IND briefing package to the FDA for its Project Lucy, a potential Phase 2b Efficacy Trial evaluating LSD Assisted Therapy in anxiety disorders. In addition, the company has now reached an agreement with University Hospital Basel Liechti Lab to conduct an interim analysis anticipated in Q1 2021 for its Phase 2a clinical trial of LSD assisted therapy for anxiety disorders currently ongoing in Switzerland.
COMPASS Pathways (NASDAQ:CMPS) a mental health care company dedicated to accelerating patient access to evidence-based innovation in mental health, reported its financial results for the third quarter of 2020 and gave an update on recent progress across its business. George Goldsmith, Chairman, CEO and Co-founder, COMPASS Pathways, said, “This has been a significant quarter, with an IPO that gives us the funds needed to advance our mission and transform mental health care. Recent hires for the company build further important expertise within our strong leadership team, including in data science and digital health, which will be core to the future of mental health care. We remain fully focused on execution of our phase IIb trial investigating our COMP360 psilocybin therapy for treatment-resistant depression and, with scientific partners in our recently established Drug Discovery Center, are also evaluating the potential of early stage compounds to address mental health challenges.”
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