Psychedelic Clinical Trials & Who’s Behind Them
February 18th, 2021
Psychedelics, Top Story
The psychedelics industry has experienced unprecedented growth over the past few years, driven by a combination of emerging research, regulatory support and investor interest. With a growing number of organizations in the space, it can be difficult for investors to keep track of what clinical trials are ongoing and what opportunities lie in the horizon.
Let’s take a look at some clinical trials taking place across therapeutic areas and how investors can participate in the potential upside.
Clinical Trials Across Therapeutic Areas
The FDA has taken an increasingly accommodative approach to psychedelic medicines as a growing body of research suggests that it could help treat many different conditions. In addition to “breakthrough therapy designations” for several trials, the FDA approved Spravato—a ketamine-based nasal spray for depression in March 2019.
The most significant clinical trials in the space include:
- MAPS is running a Phase III clinical trial evaluating MDMA for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The organization also has several other clinical trials evaluating anxiety and other disorders in Phase II clinical trials.
- COMPASS is evaluating a psychedelic treatment for treatment-resistant depression (TRD) with a Phase II clinical trial of its COMP360 program.
- The Usona Institute has a Phase II clinical trial evaluating psilocybin for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD).
- Mind Medicine Inc. (NEO: MMED) is running several Phase II clinical trials evaluating LSD for the treatment of anxiety, cluster headaches and ADHD.
- Awakn Life Sciences has a Phase II clinical trial evaluating MDMA for alcohol addiction.
- Seelos Therapeutics is evaluating psychedelic therapies for the treatment of acute suicidal ideations in major depressive disorder with its SLS-002 program.
- Eleusis’ ELE-Ket+ is in Phase II clinical trials for the treatment of major depressive disorder as an adjunctive treatment.
There are several other companies running earlier stage clinical programs or gearing up to begin clinical trials, including many publicly traded companies. In some cases, these companies could present attractive opportunities since the market hasn’t fully valued the opportunity. Investors may want to take a look at them as a way to diversify exposure in the space.
Building a Unique Psychedelics Platform
Most clinical studies are focused on mental health disorders, psychedelic medicine could play a much larger role in unmet medical conditions, like neuropsychiatric diseases, chronic pain, rare diseases and eating disorders among other things. In addition, many companies are pursuing clinical trials using off-the-shelf compounds.
Tryp Therapeutics (CSE: TRYP) is a pharmaceutical company focused on identifying and developing clinical stage compounds for diseases with high unmet medical needs through accelerated regulatory pathways. Through its PFN™ platform, the company is developing psilocybin-based drug therapies for certain neuropsychiatric disorders.
Tryp Therapeutics’ Clinical Pipeline – Source: Visual Capitalist
The company’s primary focus is on Fibromyalgia, a chronic pain syndrome affecting up to 400 million people around the world that’s characterized by abnormal processing by the central nervous system. With existing therapies leading to inconsistent responses and side effects, nearly a third of patients take chronic opioids despite the risks.
In addition to Fibromyalgia, the company is evaluating psychedelic treatments for eating disorders and other neuropsychiatric disorders. The market for psychedelics treatments as a whole could grow from $2 billion in 2019 to $6.8 billion by 2026, according to Data Bridge Market Research, creating blue-sky potential over the coming years.
Investors interested in psychedelics have a growing number of opportunities as companies advance their clinical trials. While there are a handful of companies in Phase II and III clinical trials, investors should pay close attention to emerging players that could offer broader platforms and/or a more targeted focus to the market.
For more information about Tryp Therapeutics, visit the company’s website or download their investor presentation.
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