Weed Week: A ‘shroom boom’ could see psychedelics follow cannabis’ explosive footsteps
Health & Biotech
Health & Biotech
Link copied to
For years, people have frowned upon psychedelics, believing that they’re harmful to society.
But recently psychedelics are beginning to follow in cannabis’ explosive footsteps, a market that’s grown to a global size of US$20 billion.
It all started in 2014, when researchers at Johns Hopkins said that magic mushrooms could help longtime smokers quit.
Although that research has remained inconclusive until today, JH researchers at the time concluded that:
“When administered after careful preparation and in a therapeutic context, psilocybin can lead to deep reflection about one’s life and spark motivation to change.”
Then came a more recent study in 2020, also by John Hopkins, which showed that treatment with psilocybin relieves major depression.
Famed author Tim Ferris lauded that study, saying:
“I believe this study to be a critically important proof of concept for the medical approval of psilocybin for treatment of depression, a condition I have personally struggled with for decades.”
While these studies have remained largely unapproved by the FDA, the public’s excitement for psychedelics is evidence that we might be on the verge of a “shroom boom”.
In the US, more and more cities and states are decriminalising shrooms.
Denver became the first place in the US to decriminalise psilocybin mushrooms in 2019. Since then, Oakland, Santa Cruz, Ann Arbor, and Washington DC have all legalised psilocybin.
Many psychedelic startups have also gone public, including Nasdaq-listed Compass Pathways, which has grown into a US$335 million company, and Atai Life Sciences, also a US$300m+ company.
Psychedelics are also starting to make big strides in Australia after the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) changed its classification on psilocybin and MDMA in February.
The TGA ruled that from 1 July this year, medicines containing the psychedelic substances psilocybin and MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine) can be prescribed by authorised psychiatrists for treating certain mental health conditions.
Under the new guidance, the TGA says it will permit the prescribing of MDMA for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), while psilocybin can be used for treatment-resistant depression.
Since that announcement, dozens of clinics with both online and physical locations have sprouted throughout the country, offering psychedelic-based psychotherapy sessions.
Here’s how the ASX weed stocks have performed, sorted by winners over the past week.
|Code||Company||Price||% Year||% Six Month||% Month||% Week||Market Cap|
|VIT||Vitura Health Ltd||0.34||25.93||-47.69||-4.23||3.03||$189,220,904|
|LV1||Live Verdure Ltd||0.145||-27.50||-34.09||-19.44||0.00||$12,290,063|
|SCU||Stemcell United Ltd||0.003||-77.22||-77.22||-25.00||0.00||$3,854,189|
|WOA||Wide Open Agricultur||0.325||-50.38||3.17||0.00||0.00||$42,016,576|
|RGI||Roto-Gro Intl Ltd||0.22||0.00||0.00||0.00||0.00||$4,333,920|
|AVE||Avecho Biotech Ltd||0.005||-70.59||-28.57||-16.67||0.00||$10,810,796|
|AC8||Auscann Grp Hlgs Ltd||0.04||-29.82||0.00||0.00||0.00||$17,621,884|
|MDC||Medlab Clinical Ltd||6.6||-42.11||-14.29||0.00||0.00||$15,071,113|
|EVE||EVE Health Group Ltd||0.001||-20.00||0.00||0.00||0.00||$5,274,483|
|CGB||Cann Global Limited||0.021||-25.00||0.00||0.00||0.00||$5,436,345|
|WNX||Wellnex Life Ltd||0.053||-46.46||-26.39||-15.87||0.00||$22,457,117|
|LGP||Little Green Pharma||0.18||-50.68||0.00||12.50||-2.70||$52,302,220|
|IDT||IDT Australia Ltd||0.096||-38.06||6.67||7.87||-4.00||$23,400,453|
|ECS||ECS Botanics Holding||0.018||-21.74||-5.26||-10.00||-5.26||$19,921,152|
|CAN||Cann Group Ltd||0.165||-48.44||-29.79||0.00||-5.71||$64,043,903|
|TSN||The Sust Nutri Grp||0.012||-91.43||-91.43||-29.41||-7.69||$1,689,155|
|BOT||Botanix Pharma Ltd||0.083||6.41||33.87||-3.49||-10.75||$108,836,623|
|BOD||BOD Science Ltd||0.049||-65.75||-67.33||-16.95||-10.91||$7,656,075|
|CPH||Creso Pharma Ltd||0.009||-83.02||-52.63||-18.18||-18.18||$25,673,491|
Zelira Therapeutics (ASX:ZLD)
The best mover by far was Zelira, which almost tripled after announcing that its diabetic nerve pain drug outperforms multi-billion dollar Big Pharma drug, Lyrica – achieving a significant reduction in NRS pain scores, indicating a decrease in symptom severity.
ZLT-L-007 was found to be safe and well-tolerated, meeting the primary endpoint for safety with no Serious Adverse Events (SAE). The study also met its secondary endpoints, including significant decreases in Visual Analog Scale (VAS) and Short-form McGill scores, among others.
The company plans to evaluate the further progression of ZLT-L-007 into formal FDA clinical trials.
“The results align perfectly with our strategy of generating scientifically rigorous and clinically validated data for our patent-protected proprietary cannabinoid-based drugs,” CEO Dr Oludare Odumosu said.
Vitura Health and Australian-based Releaf Group have established an unincorporated joint venture, to combine the technology and distribution capabilities of Vitura and the large network of franchise medical cannabis clinical services of Releaf.
The JV is is expected to increase the volume of medicinal cannabis products prescribed and distributed through the CanView platform, and the number of patients and prescribers registered and using the platform’s functionality.
CannEpil, MGC Pharma’s Investigational Medicinal Product, has now been successfully imported and received by its first patients in the UK.
The first patient has received CannEpil through the ‘I AM Billy Foundation’. Additionally, the company has delivered CannEpil to its first patient in the UK via the Named Patient Request programme.
This follows the announcement on 11 April that CannEpil was now available in the UK via Named Patient Request, and available to be prescribed by doctors on the General Medical Council specialist register across the country.
CannEpil is also in the process of a clinical development programme for patients suffering from refractory (or drug-resistant) epilepsy.
Incannex has announced three global leaders will join the advisory board of Clarion Clinics Group.
Clarion Clinics is a collaborative venture between IHL and three leading Australian psychedelics experts, Dr Paul Liknaitzky, psychiatrist Professor Suresh Sundram and Sean O’Carroll, who are co-founders, key executives, and directors of the company.
Clarion’s first clinic will open its doors to patients in Q3 CY23, and the company intends to expand rapidly following the successful operation of the first clinic.
At Stockhead we tell it like it is. While Incannex Healthcare and MGC Pharma are Stockhead advertisers, they did not sponsor this article.