HomeFeatured NewsAtlanta Becomes Latest City to Consider Decriminalizing Psychedelics

Atlanta Becomes Latest City to Consider Decriminalizing Psychedelics

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Atlanta just became the latest city to consider decriminalizing psychedelics. On September 12, just one week after San Francisco officially decriminalized psychedelics, a meeting was held by the City Council’s Public Safety and Legal Administration Committee to discuss a resolution that sought to replicate San Francisco’s policies. The new bill would see police deprioritize enforcing law on people carrying psychedelic mushrooms and is part of a national effort to normalize the use of magic mushrooms and other plants as therapies for mental illness. Although the committee did not yet resolve to move the action forward, its members unanimously agreed to hold the measure for further study and continue discussing it in the next session. The decriminalization of psychedelics is good news for companies developing psychedelic-based treatments to combat mental illness, such as Numinus Wellness (TSX:NUMI) (OTCQX:NUMIF), Atai Life Sciences N.V. (NASDAQ:ATAI), Compass Pathways (NASDAQ:CMPS), Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc (NASDAQ:MNMD) (NEO:MMED), and Cybin Inc. (NYSE:CYBN).

Numinus Wellness Inc. (TSX:NUMI) (OTCQX:NUMIF) is a mental health care company advancing innovative mental health care and safe, evidence-based psychedelic-assisted therapies. The company offers a wide range of mental health care services, including counseling, therapy, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), ketamine-assisted therapy and psychedelic-assisted therapy (through Health Canada’s Special Access Program).

On September 22, Numinus announced the opening of a new Montreal clinic that will replace an existing downtown clinic. The new site, which is located in the Plateau neighbourhood, will have expanded capacity to offer ketamine treatments, including different administrations of ketamine such as Spravato, intramuscular, lozenge and nasal spray, and a wider assortment of ketamine-assisted therapy options with options in treatment length and session type.

Numinus currently offers a six-week ketamine-assisted therapy program for the treatment of addiction, depression, trauma and anxiety. New services will include the option to receive ketamine as a standalone treatment, which will allow clients to complement prior ketamine-assisted therapy or use it as an emergency antidepressant or with therapy from an external health provider.

A few days earlier, the company announced that its Toronto clinic, the Neurology Centre of Toronto (NCT) is now offering ketamine-assisted therapy for patients with neurologic conditions, including brain injury, epilepsy, concussion, and functional neurological disorders. 

NCT offers a comprehensive range of services that include primary neurologic care and supportive therapies by a team of over 20 specialists. The added service will be led by a psychologist and follow the company’s existing protocol for ketamine-assisted therapy, which are already in use at its other locations in Canada and the United States.

NCT is also expanding its capabilities to support applications from Health Canada’s Special Access Program (SAP) for other psychedelic-assisted therapies. The SAP is a federal program that allows patients with serious or life-threatening conditions to apply for access to investigational medical treatments not yet available to the public, including therapies using psychedelics like MDMA and psilocybin. A successful SAP application was recently completed by a Montreal-based Numinus physician to provide psilocybin-assisted therapy for depression.

Numinus Wellness also recently provided an update on the Novamind acquisition integration, announcing that its newly acquired US clinics performed well in fiscal Q4, with a significant customer appointment increase in recent months. More than 6,200 client appointments were held in Canada and the US in August, marking a 25% increase over July. In August, the company’s eight US wellness clinics – six in Utah and two in Arizona – completed more than 4,900 customer appointments, a 22% increase over July.

Numinus is now working on expanding its ketamine-assisted therapy product throughout Canada. Ketamine therapy sessions at Numinus’ US facilities increased 35% from July to 1,520 visits in August. TMS service demand is also growing. The company conducted 725 TMS engagements in August, a 23% increase over the previous month.

Numinus Wellness operates 13 clinics across Canada and the US, with comprehensive services ranging from mental health therapy to neurologic care. The company also supports clients in accessing psychedelic-assisted therapy through Health Canada’s federal Special Access Program (SAP). In addition, Numinus provides clinical trial management services, and operates a complementary Health Canada licensed research lab that studies a wide range of psychedelic substances.

For more information about Numinus Wellness (TSX:NUMI) (OTCQX:NUMIF), click here.

Healthcare Companies Continue Studies on Psychedelics

In July, mental health care company Compass Pathways (NASDAQ:CMPS) announced the start of a phase II clinical trial that will examine the effectiveness of COMP360 psilocybin given along with psychological support in persons with anorexia nervosa. In the phase II clinical experiment at four top research centres in the UK and US, 60 individuals with anorexia nervosa will be given either 25 mg or 1 mg of the investigational COMP360 psilocybin while receiving psychological care. Research and development (R&D) costs were $15.9 million for the second quarter, up from $11.4 million in the prior year. Including non-cash share-based compensation expense of $3.2 million, the net loss for the quarter was $21.0 million, or $0.50 loss per share, as opposed to $17.5 million, or $0.44 loss per share (including non-cash share-based compensation expense of $1.9 million). 

Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc (NASDAQ:MNMD) (NEO:MMED) has recently published a manuscript in the peer-reviewed scientific journal Biological Psychiatry titled “Lysergic Acid Diethylamide-Assisted Therapy In Patients With Anxiety With And Without A Life-Threatening Illness A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Phase II Study.” The study builds on previously published, favourable results that will be presented orally at the PSYCH Symposium in London on May 11, 2022. On September 14, MindMed declared that it had received a letter from The Nasdaq Stock Market LLC informing it that it was once again in compliance with the minimum bid price listing criteria of $1.00 per share under Nasdaq Listing Rule 5550(a)(2)Nasdaq. 

On August 30, Cybin Inc. (NYSE:CYBN) announced that the first two study participants in its Phase 1/2a evaluation of CYB003 for treating major depressive disorder (MDD) had received their doses. The purpose of CYB003 is to alleviate the drawbacks and restrictions of oral psilocybin. Preclinical results showed that CYB003 had a quicker onset of action, a shorter duration of impact, and reduced fluctuation in plasma levels. These preclinical results showed that CYB003 might lessen the time and resource demands on patients, providers, and payers and potentially increase the treatment’s scalability and accessibility. 

Clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company Atai Life Sciences (NASDAQ:ATAI) declared that it has signed a term loan agreement with Hercules Capital, Inc. for a maximum amount of $175 million. According to the conditions of the loan facility, $15 million was taken at closing. After that, another $20 million was made available for Atai to draw upon by March 15, 2023, and another $25 million was made available for Atai to draw upon by December 15, 2023. Subject to a few conditions being met, the remaining $115 million becomes accessible through March 31, 2025, in tranches. Research and development costs were $17.9 million and $33.4 million for the second quarter, compared to $16.0 million and $21.6 million for the comparable prior year periods. Atai reported a net loss attributable to shareholders of $36.6 million, which included non-cash share-based compensation expense of $9.5 million. This is down from the comparable prior year period’s net loss of $48.5 million, which included non-cash share-based compensation expense of $37.5 million.

The Numinus approach, which includes psychedelic production, research, and clinic care, is at the forefront of a shift toward healing rather than symptom management for depression, anxiety, trauma, pain, and substance use. Numinus is a pioneer in incorporating psychedelic-assisted therapies into mainstream therapeutic practice, laying the groundwork for a better society.

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