NEW YORK, June 24, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The psychedelic drugs market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 16.3% over the next eight years to reach $6.85 billion by 2027, according to Data Bridge Market Research. The key factors that will fuel this growth include the increasing prevalence of depression and other mental health disorders in the U.S. and oa growing acceptance of psychedelic drugs for the treatment of depression. The first psychedelic drug to gain FDA Breakthrough Therapy designation was Johnson & Johnson's (NYSE:JNJ) SPRAVATO (esketamine) nasal spray for treatment-resistant depression in March 2019, and a handful of companies have since followed suit. Numinus Wellness Inc. (TSXV:NUMI) (OTCPK:LKYSD) recently became the first publicly-traded company in Canada to be granted a licence by Health Canada to conduct research to standardize the extraction of psilocybin from mushrooms. Meanwhile, Mota Ventures Corp. (OTCPK:PEMTF) (CSE:MOTA) is entering the psychedelic drug market through the acquisition of European psychedelic medicine company Verrian Ontario Ltd. Even Big Pharma giant AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV) recently gained a stake in the psychedelic drugs market through the acquisition of Allergan PLC. However, it appears that pure-play psychedelic medicine company Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. (NEO:MMED) (OTCQB:MMEDF) is a front-runner with multiple novel therapies moving through clinical trials.
Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. (NEO:MMED) (OTCQB:MMEDF), a neuro-pharmaceutical company that discovers, develops and deploys psychedelic-inspired medicines, has continued to make serious headway with its psychedelic-inspired medicines. MindMed has a total of six clinical trials ongoing or being prepared that are based on psychedelic substances including LSD, MDMA, and Ayahuasca's active ingredient DMT. MindMed is planning to initiate a later stage Phase 2b clinical trial of LSD for anxiety.
On June 24, the company announced that it is creating technologies that seek to personalize and optimize the dosing of MDMA, LSD and other psychedelics for patients. In collaboration with its R&D partner University Hospital Basel, two separate patent applications were filed that cover MDMA dose optimization and LSD dose-response.
Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. (MMED.AQN) (MMEDF.QB) possesses the world's leading collection of human safety data and pharmacokinetics for both MDMA and LSD. The company previously acquired the worldwide exclusive license to the leading collection of human safety data and pharmacokinetics on both substances from the University Hospital Basel, which is based on over 10 years of scientific research.
Psychedelic Medicines Move Towards the Mainstream
It may have been Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) that kickstarted psychedelic medicines' move into the mainstream when its Ketamine-like drug treatment for severe depression was handed FDA approval, but Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. is gaining serious momentum in its drug developments.
Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. (MMED.AQN) (MMEDF.QB) became the only pure-play publicly-traded North American psychedelics company to conduct Phase 2 trials on a psychedelic compound in May after it signed a clinical trial agreement with Maastricht University to conduct a Phase 2a clinical trial for LSD in adult patients with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), which is expected to begin recruitment of patients by the end of the year.
Meanwhile in Canada, Vancouver-based healthcare company Numinus Wellness Inc. (TSXV:NUMI) (OTC:LKYSD) is gearing up to produce and extract naturally sourced, sustainable psilocybin for medical research purposes after receiving Health Canada approval earlier this month. The regulatory approval will allow Numinus to proceed with the production of naturally-sourced psilocybin from mushrooms for research purposes to support psychedelic-assisted therapy and research at lower costs than the currently-produced synthetic psilocybin. The company is not involved in the clinical trial space.
Mota Ventures Corp. (OTCPK:PEMTF) (CSE:MOTA) is the most recent addition to the psychedelic medicine space. The acquisition of Verrian Ontario will provide the company with renowned addiction medicine experts, R&D facilities and a 110,000 square foot pharmaceutical manufacturing facility in Radebeul, Germany.
Increasing Prevalence of Depression and Mental Disorders Fuel Psychedelic Drug Market
An estimated 26% of Americans ages 18 and older suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder in a given year and roughly 17.3 million adults in the US have had at least one major depressive episode. At the same time, an estimated 40 million adults in the US have anxiety disorders. Those numbers are only expected to increase due to the after-effects of the global pandemic, creating even more urgency for treatments that work.
In 2012, the FDA introduced its Breakthrough Therapy designation to expedite the development and review of drugs where preliminary clinical evidence demonstrates they could provide a substantial improvement over available therapies for serious or life-threatening diseases. Last year, the FDA granted Breakthrough Therapy designation to two psilocybin-based drugs to treat the major depressive disorder (MDD).
AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV) gained the rights to a novel psychedelic-based treatment for MDD when it acquired Allergan, but it's unclear if the company will relaunch R&D on the ketamine-derived drug rapastinel. Although the drug failed to meet its primary endpoint for the treatment of MDD in three acute pivotal studies, a separate study revealed that it could help combat opioid addiction, a common side effect of antidepressants. According to research conducted by an undergraduate at Villanova University, rapastinel substantially reversed acute signs of opioid withdrawal in rats in just three days.
Apart from its ADHD and opioid addiction therapies, Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. (MMED.AQN) (MMEDF.QB) is also hoping to provide an alternative treatment for the 40 million Americans suffering from anxiety with the recently launched Project Lucy. The commercial drug development program for the treatment of anxiety disorders is the first experiential, psychedelic-assisted therapy to be added to the company's drug development pipeline. MindMed plans to initiate a Phase 2b human trial that will focus on experiential doses of LSD administered by a therapist and has established a task force to prepare a briefing package for opening an Investigational New Drug (IND) with the US FDA.
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