🫠 This Week in Psychedelics

[5-min read] Beckley Psytech shares results from 5-MeO-DMT trial.

Welcome to Tricycle Day. We’re the 5-MeO-DMT of newsletters. We’ll never push religion on you, but after enough time with us, it’s hard not to feel divine. 😇 

Here’s what we got this week.

  • Results are in: 5-MeO-DMT for depression 🤯 

  • Research nonprofit puts MAPS on blast 💥

  • Countdown begins for legalization in MA ⏰

  • Launch and grow your psychedelic biz 🧑‍💻

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MICRODOSES
🔬 Research

Grow up and glow up: People who’ve experienced childhood trauma are no less likely to benefit from ayahuasca than anyone else.
Relax your mind: Microdosing psilocybin can lead to loosening of mental structures and more flexible thinking.
The God molecule: Beckley Psytech will study its formulation of 5-MeO-DMT in alcohol use disorder.
Get real: New ketamine studies show real-world outcomes in depression and anxiety and in PTSD.

🏛️ Policy

C’mon, man: Connecticut lawmakers approved a bill to decriminalize psilocybin, but the governor still has concerns.
Always the task force, never the bride: Lawmakers in Maine, Vermont, and Maryland advanced bills to establish psychedelic task forces.
Have some compassion: Illinois’s Senate Minority Leader is pushing back on the Compassionate Use and Research of Entheogens (CURE) Act.
Win for the nerds: The DEA has agreed to hold a hearing before banning DOI and DOC, two psychedelics favored by scientists.

📈 Business

No shrooms, no shirt, no service: A psilocybin service center in Oregon became the first to go out of business.
Dialed in: The USPTO has granted PharmAla Biotech a patent over its specific mixture of MDMA enantiomers.
Hope they have Golden Teachers: Naropa University will offer a psychedelic studies minor starting next year.
Finding their bearings: Compass Pathways’ two cofounders stepped down from the board of directors. Meanwhile, a lawsuit against the company has escalated.
Big pivot: Psychedelic Spotlight’s parent company is dropping out of media and moving on to… mobile gaming?

🫠 Just for fun

Brilliant color: See the packaging of the first mechanically produced LSD blotter.
Gen 2C-B: Why are young people taking more psychedelics than ever?
Lights, camera, action: Submit your best psychedelic film for a chance to win $500 CAD.
Meme of the week: My ancestors watching me before I trip

THE PEAK EXPERIENCE

5-MeO-DMT outpaces depression

With most things in life, there’s the fast way, and there’s the right way.

Just ask my wife, who’ll probably have some choice words for me and my dishwasher-loading job this afternoon.

But treating depression, as it turns out, may be the exception that makes the rule.

This week, Beckley Psytech shared early results from its Phase 2a study of BPL-003, a proprietary formulation of 5-MeO-DMT, in treatment-resistant depression.

Not to be confused with N,N-DMT, 5-MeO-DMT is a short-acting psychedelic that reliably occasions 30-minute mystical experiences of ego dissolution and oneness.

Now, about that study—even though there were only 12 patients in the trial, the results are still impressive.

  • ⚡️ It worked fast: 55% of participants had responded to treatment the day after dosing.

  • 📆 Results lasted: 55% of participants were in remission from depression at day 29. 45% were still in remission at day 85.

  • 🏎️ Did we mention it worked fast? On average, participants were lucid and ready to carry on with their day in less than 2 hours.

The fact that you can ingest some medicine, meet God, and be sitting down for a veggie burger all in the space of an hour or two is wild enough. Layer on the antidepressant effects, and it’s no wonder they call 5-MeO “the businessman’s trip.”

Never mind that practically everyone comes out questioning the corporate matrix and ready to move into an ashram. Guess we’ll have to wait and see on the incidence rate of that side effect… 🫠

AFTERGLOW
I see haters

Haters gonna hate

No one ever achieved greatness without picking up a few haters. By that standard, MAPS is well on its way. This week, the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) published a draft report on MAPS’ clinical trials of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD. Ngl, it’s pretty harsh. Despite both of MAPS’ Phase 3 trials hitting their endpoints, ICER maintains that the evidence for MDMA therapy is “insufficient.”

So, who are these naysayers anyway? ICER is a non-profit research institute that evaluates the clinical effectiveness and value of new medicines. For better or worse, policymakers do pay attention to their analyses. In this case, their critique boils down to concerns around blinding (yup, we’ve heard that one before) and therapists being too heavy handed in reframing participants’ challenging experiences as steps toward healing.

The entire report is based on interviews with people with firsthand or secondhand knowledge of the trials. Kinda seems like they’ve cherrypicked the most critical opinions, though. If you’d like to balance the scale, ICER is accepting comments through April 22.

Massachusetts in the hot seat

Clock’s ticking in Beantown. About 3 months ago, activists submitted almost 100k signatures supporting a ballot initiative to legalize psychedelics statewide. They collected so many, in fact, that the state legislature was forced to consider the proposal ahead of voters. Last week, lawmakers finally held a special hearing to kick off that process. Now they have until May 1 to decide whether to legalize psychedelics via a state-regulated and taxed system.

The good news: even if the lawmakers don’t go for it, the show’s not over. The ball would just land back into the activists’ court. Massachusetts for Mental Health Options (MMHO), the campaigners responsible for the initial push, would just need to collect another ~12,500 autographs by July 3 to put the proposal on the November ballot. Then voters could decide.

Unlike Utah’s recent (surprising) law, the MA measure wouldn’t be limited to psychiatric medical healthcare. It would also allow people to access psychedelics for spiritual reasons and wellness purposes. After all, why should you have to be sick to become a better version of yourself?

CYCLISTS’ PICKS
UNTIL NEXT TIME

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ONE CYCLIST’S REVIEW
Feeling euphoric

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DISCLAIMER: This newsletter is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice. The use, possession, and distribution of psychedelic drugs are illegal in most countries and may result in criminal prosecution.

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