COVID-19 has become known as “the pandemic” in news media and mainstream reporting, there’s a second pandemic ripping through the world.
It's even more problematic in the U.S. and no one is talking about it.
19.1% of all U.S. adults suffer from some form of mental illness each year. 5% suffer from serious mental health problems.
For veterans, somewhere between 11% and 20% suffer from PTSD. Many of these ex-soldiers are never treated. Those that are, often find VA treatment options were unhelpful or not enough.
This is a larger problem than the opioid crisis and even COVID in the long term. Yet, seemingly, not much is actually being done.
However, for some very forward thinkers, there could be a new breakthrough field on the horizon.
Following Pot’s Footsteps
A decade ago, no one would have thought marijuana would become so mainstream that the majority of states allow it despite continued federal laws.
Pot has become such a huge industry, there are several multibillion corporations trading on major exchanges like the NYSE and Nasdaq.
Psychedelics like psilocybin and MDMA could someday follow those footsteps.
Psychedelic treatments for PTSD and other mental health issues are right now passing from way-out-of-the-box ideas to actual FDA-approved clinic trials.
In one of the first studies a decade ago, researchers found MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD resulted in 83% of patients no longer meeting the criteria for PTSD.
This is just one study with a very small sample size (12 receiving MDMA, along with 8 receiving placebos). But similar findings are coming from other, more recent studies. And the number of these studies is rising.
Just this week, a company called Mind Medicine Inc. (OTC: MMEDF) announced a Phase 1 clinical trial of MDMA-LSD treatments in Switzerland.
Obviously, this industry is nowhere near legalization. But you might be surprised at how close it is to legitimization.
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Active Bipartisan Support Continues to Build
At least two major U.S. cities have already decriminalized psychedelics, including magic mushrooms: Denver, Colorado, and Oakland, California.
Oregon is even likely going to have a state-wide vote on it this November.
Even the FDA, late last year, designated psilocybin treatment as a “breakthrough therapy.”
It also even approved a Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) ketamine-derived nasal spray called Spravato last year.
All of these things seem to have happened while no one was paying attention.
But that time is coming. Serious people are waking up to this potential treatment and the popularization of these drugs.
Groups like those that helped push through decriminalization in Oakland and Denver are moving on to Washington D.C. In fact, one group called Society for Psychedelic Outreach, Reform, and Education, or SPORE, is filing for lobbyist status in the capital.
And it appears there are some politicians beginning to listen… from both sides of the aisle.
It might be surprising to hear that the likes of the left’s rising star Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and die-hard Trump supporter Matt Gaetz could ever agree on anything. But on this subject, they have.
AOC filed legislation last summer to lift barriers to psilocybin and MDMA research. She’s joined by others in Congress like Rho Khanna, Lou Correa, and, yes, Matt Gaetz. In fact, this odd group is being referred to as the Psychedelic Caucus, amongst reform activists.
The bill was obviously shot down. But as we’ve seen with marijuana, that wall of opposition is slowly weakening.
The few ways to play this today are still highly risky. But there are opportunities.
Mind Medicine (MindMed) noted above is one. It is active on the research and development side.
Champignon Brands Inc. (OTC: SHRMF) is another major player from Canada, where research laws are a bit easier. Champignon is more of a collector of other companies. It has recently gone on a buying spree picking up companies involved in drug delivery systems and mushroom growing.
While this space remains relatively risky and small, it won’t be forever. This emerging trend will likely soon spawn plays just as big as many marijuana companies.
I have my eyes on this space.
It’ll only take one big study or one state to go all-in, and we’ll see this odd medical treatment subindustry explode.
To your prosperity and health,
Joshua M. Belanger
Executive Publisher & Founder