Creso Pharma (ASX:CPH) says the Canadian psychedelic research company it has agreed to acquire will broaden the scope of its upcoming clinical trial evaluating “magic mushrooms” as a post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) treatment.

Halucenex Life Sciences will include patients in the trial with treatment-resistant PTSD who aren’t military veterans or first responders, after receiving an “overwhelming amount of inbound enquiries … from individuals that suffer from debilitating mental health conditions and are seeking alternative treatment methods.”

Adding non-veterans to the upcoming phase 2 trial will allow it to collect an additional data set, providing “real world” examples of the potential of psilocybin (the “magic” ingredient of magic mushrooms) as a treatment.

Enthusiasm has been growing in scientific circles for the potential of psychedelics to treat a range of psychological conditions, with Australian Health Minister Greg Hunt in March announcing a $15 million grant round for psychedelic research.

“Following various regulatory shifts in the US and the exacerbating effect COVID-19 has had on mental health conditions across the population, it is becoming more and more apparent that psychedelic treatments could become mainstream in the near future,” Halucenex founder and chief executive Bill Fleming said.

“So to include everyday people in our R&D will provide us with examples of how psilocybin can be used more broadly to treat mental health issues.

“Further, expanding the trial scope will add to the growing body of evidence for psychedelic based medicines, and assist the company as it progresses further research and licensing agreements in North America more broadly.”

Creso non-executive chairman Adam Blumenthal called broadening the scope of the clinical trial a “very promising development” that will lay the foundation for the company to become a best-in-class provider of cannabis, cannabinoid and psychedelic alternative medicine.

The market for PTSD therapeutics is expected to grow to US$10.5 billion by 2025, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Halucenex is currently in “well advanced” discussions with Health Canada about its application for a Controlled Drugs and Substances Dealer’s License, and expects to receive it shortly.

Once that happens, Halucenex will apply for Clinical Trial Authorisation and then begin the trial in its 6,000 square foot purpose-built medical facility in Windsor, Nova Scotia.

This article was developed in collaboration with Creso Pharma, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

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