A look back at the growth and development that occurred in the psychedelic medicine industry throughout 2022.
It is remarkable to note just how much progress we’ve seen the psychedelic medicine industry over the past few years. 2022 brought clear evidence of the revolution psychedelics are experiencing — from numerous clinical trials with exciting data, to new legislation at the state and federal level, and growing general acceptance among the public as more high-profile celebrities shared their positive experiences with psychedelics.
Here’s a look back at of some of the biggest moments in the psychedelic medicine industry in 2022:
Clinical Trials and Studies
With more than 54 ongoing, planned or completed Phase 1, 2 or 3 clinical trials, and an additional 32 in preclinical or discovery phases, scientific research into the possibilities of psychedelic medicine is making significant progress. Among the most notable are:
- MAPS, the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, marked a landmark achievement in its efforts to use MDMA-Assisted Therapy for PTSD treatments with the completion of their second Phase 3 trial, MAPP2. Outcomes from this study are eagerly anticipated and expected in early 2023.
- The completion of a MindMed Phase 2 study to assess LSD-assisted therapy for patients suffering from anxiety found promising results, reporting that LSD produced “long-lasting and notable reductions in anxiety and comorbid depression symptoms up to 16 weeks.”
- A Harvard University study found that “lifetime use of MDMA/ecstasy and psilocybin is associated with reduced odds of major depressive episodes.” Furthermore, the study echoed others like it in suggesting that psilocybin may be useful for treating depressive symptoms.
- Awakn Life Sciences published encouraging results of a Phase 2 a/b trial treating Alcohol Use Disorder with ketamine-assisted therapy. Findings showed that “ketamine combined with therapy resulted in total abstinence in 162 of 180 days in the following 6-month period, achieving an increase in abstinence from around 2% prior to the trial to 86% post trial.”
- Nature Magazine published a study from the University of British Columbia that found “psilocybin microdosers demonstrate greater observed improvements in mood and mental health at one month relative to non-microdosing controls.” Over a one month period, subjects who used small, repeated amounts of psilocybin reported improvements in depression, stress and anxiety compared to those who did not microdose psilocybin.
- New research from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology, & Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King’s College London, in partnership with COMPASS Pathways, found that Psilocybin, in 10mg or 25mg doses, has no short- or long-term detrimental effects in healthy people.
Rising Public Interest in Psychedelic Medicine
Psychedelics saw no shortage of limelight in major media outlets around the world throughout 2022. From eye-opening celebrity interviews, huge investments into the industry, and a Netflix series that changed the minds of many, psychedelic medicine saw unmistakably increased time in the spotlight.
- Netflix series “How to Change Your Mind” by Michael Pollan took the world by storm as it broke through decades of stigma to cast a new light on psychedelics and mental health. From Late Show interviews to coverage in TIME Magazine, there’s no doubt the series made a significant cultural impact for the industry.
- NFL superstar Aaron Rodgers opened up about his own personal healing experiences with psychedelics to a media whirlwind. He joins other outspoken professional athlete voices, such as Lamar Odom, Mike Tyson and Daniel Carcillo, as well as celebrity voices Joe Rogan, Chelsea Handler, Miley Cyrus, Kristen Bell, and Megan Fox in support of psychedelic medicine.
- Joining other high-profile investors who have jumped into the psychedelic space, Shark Tank’s Kevin Harrington invested in and joined the Psycheceutical team in 2022. As Strategic Advisor, Harrington will provide valuable expertise in pursuit of our mission to increase the safety and efficacy of psychedelic compounds for mental health treatment.
- Elon Musk took to Twitter to share his thoughts on psychedelics and mental health. In a reply to Cybin CEO Doug Drysdale’s tweet about Wall Street’s blind spot to psychedelic medicine, Musk tweeted “Psychedelics and MDMA can make a real difference to mental health, especially for extreme depression and PTSD. We should take this seriously.”
- Boasting a star-studded speaker lineup, Microdose’s 2nd-annual Wonderland conference was the ultimate destination for insight into the psychedelic medicine industry. The 3-day showcase included Psycheceutical’s Strategic Advisor Kevin Harrington and Chief Visionary Officer Zappy Zapolin, and renowned industry figures and celebrity voices like Paul Stamets, Rick Doblin, and Lamar Odom.
Legislation and Regulatory Status
From coast to coast, 2022 also saw psychedelics reach political and regulatory milestones that industry stakeholders should be keeping an eye on.
- In the November midterm elections, mental health and psychedelic advocates saw a major victory as Colorado joined Oregon with the passing of Proposition 122, the Natural Medicine Health Act, which decriminalizes psilocybin, psilocin, mescaline (not derived from peyote), ibogaine, and DMT, for all adults 21+ years old.
- Congress announced the creation of a Congressional Psychedelics Advancing Clinical Treatments (PACT) Caucus. Led by Representatives Lou Correa (D-CA) and Jack Bergman (R-MI), the caucus will include bipartisan members of Congress committed to “addressing ways to alleviate the national mental health crisis through psychedelic science and research.”
- Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Rand Paul (R-KY) introduced the Breakthrough Therapies Act, which would involve the DEA rescheduling “potentially life saving drugs”, such as MDMA and psilocybin, from Schedule I to Schedule II, removing “burdensome federal regulations that impede research and development of drugs that may be inappropriately listed in Schedule I despite their potential to save many lives.”
- The DEA announced that it plans to further increase production quotas for certain Schedule I compounds in 2023 to meet the “significant increase” in their use for research and clinical trials. The proposed increases include: 5-Methoxy-N, N-dimethyltryptamine, Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), Marijuana, Mescaline, Psilocyn, and All Other Tetrahydrocannabinol.
- California Senator Scott Weiner (D) announced new legislation (Senate Bill 58) to decriminalize the possession and use of plant-based psychedelics in California. “Psychedelics have huge promise for mental health & addiction treatment,” he tweeted.
A Breakout Year for Psycheceutical
At Psycheceutical, we had several defining milestones of our own to share throughout 2022.
From the completed reverse-merger and acquisition by Blue Water Ventures International, to the considerable growth of our team with the addition of Julian Bailes, M.D., Principal Medical Advisor; Kevin Harrington, Strategic Advisor; Dr. Aric Logsdon, Scientific Director, and the announcement of our Medical Advisory Board, it was an exciting year of progress and strategic planning for the future.
As we look forward into 2023 and beyond, we’re eager to share with you what’s on the horizon. In the coming months, stay tuned for more updates and insights from the Psycheceutical team, and be sure to follow us on social media for exciting announcements and news.