This Company Believes Psilocybin Could be a Game-Changer for Obesity Treatment

With eating disorders, such as obesity bursting at the seams, NeonMind Biosciences (CSE:NEON)(OTC:NMDBF) looking at psilocybin as a potential treatment with . C. Laird Birmingham, a psychiatry professor at the University of British Columbia and an expert in eating disorders. He notes, “Psilocybin has the potential to serve as a new and different tool to help people lose weight and maintain their weight loss by changing their neural pathways,” as quoted by CTV News, adding, there’s potential to “reset the behaviors and cognitions that link life stress and trauma to eating behaviors.”

In addition, according to CTV News, “The goal of the trials is, in part, to examine whether psychedelics like psilocybin are capable of changing unconscious responses to emotional situations that can trigger addictions, including food-related addictions.” Not only could this be a major game-changer for NeonMind Biosciences, it could be a massive catalyst Cybin Inc. (NEO:CYBN)(OTC:CLXPF), Tryp Therapeutics Inc. (CSE:TRYP), Mind Medicine Inc. (NEO:MMED)(OTC:MMEDF), and Compass Pathways (NASDAQ:CMPS).

Look at NeonMind Biosciences (CSE:NEON)(OTC:NMDBF)

NeonMind Biosciences, for example, announced it has completed the sale of assets related to its consumer division, including e-commerce operations and underlying functional food assets, as well as shares owned in Translational Life Sciences Inc., for a combined consideration of approximately C$1.1 million plus a royalty.

This follows the Company’s completion of its Integrative drug development plan by its research and development working group, which validated the Company’s path forward with its focus on psychedelic drug development programs. This includes the advancement of NEO-001, synthetic psilocybin, to treat obesity into a regulator-approved psychedelic drug product.

“Obesity continues to be a key market for drug development due to a massive, underserved population of patients and burdensome comorbidities including depression, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes,” said Rob Tessarolo, President & CEO of NeonMind. “We have encouraging proprietary pre-clinical data showing the positive effects of psilocybin in reducing weight gain, and the published clinical data to date on the compound is promising in its ability to provide a durable response in multiple psychiatry indications. As we progress towards clinical studies in obese patients, our increased engagement with scientific and medical experts has resulted in positive feedback in the novelty of the NEO-001 program and reinforcing its potential and positioning as a valuable treatment tool”.

With the decision to focus on NEO-001, NeonMind has decided to divest its non-core assets in functional foods and early-stage discovery. NeonMind is now well positioned to more efficiently utilize capital to progress as a leading company in the transformative field of interventional psychiatry, with two divisions: 1) a pharmaceutical division focused on psychedelic drug development and 2) a medical services division focused on providing evidence-backed treatments including psychedelics.

With the pharmaceutical division, NeonMind aims to advance NEO-001 through major drug development milestones including a pre-IND meeting with the FDA and a pre-CTA meeting with Health Canada in Q4 2021 for the planned Phase 1/2 study aimed to address deficiencies in chronic weight management. With the medical services division, the company is focused on setting up a specialty clinic network providing interventional psychiatry treatments, including psychedelics, with a target to announce the first location in Q4 2021.

“Although NeonMind mushroom coffees have been well received by consumers, significant further investment is required to drive a successful consumer products business. We prefer to focus on our core competencies, which are drug development and deployment of medical services,” said Rob Tessarolo. “We are excited by the significant opportunity before us: to bring psychedelic-based treatments to market that have the potential to provide breakthrough therapies for mental illness and obesity.”

On September 10, 2021, NeonMind entered into an agreement with Better Plant Sciences Inc., whereby Better Plant agreed to purchase the functional food assets related to NeonMind’s consumer division for C$645,000 plus a royalty of 3% of net product sales above C$1,000,000 for 25 years. On September 10, 2021, the disposition was completed and the following assets were transferred by NeonMind to Better Plant: four mushroom coffee products currently being sold in Canada, and four mushroom coffee dietary supplement products, including existing inventory, raw materials and packaging for all eight products, social media accounts related to the products, a domain and the Shopify-enabled website in Canada and the US, as well as associated marketing materials and a license to use the brand NeonMind in association with the products.

In consideration for the assets Better Plant paid C$645,000 including taxes, plus an agreement to pay a royalty of 3% of net product sales payable on sales over C$1,000,000 for 25 years. The payment of C$645,000 was made by setting off the balance due on a note for C$645,000 owed by NeonMind to Better Plant which had a maturity date in February 2022.

On August 30, 2021, NeonMind sold all of the common shares it owned in TLS for $450,000 cash to a group of purchasers. The principal purchaser was Dr. William Panenka, who is a shareholder in NeonMind and the principal of TLS.

The net result on NeonMind’s current assets of both transactions is an increase in working capital of approximately C$1.1 million. Although each of the TLS and Better Plant transactions may be considered related party transactions pursuant to Multilateral Instrument 61-101, each transaction is exempt from the shareholder approval and valuation requirements of the instrument.

Other related developments from around the markets include:

Cybin Inc. announced that it has filed two additional international patent applications that bring the potential to obtain patent coverage in 153 countries for each of the patent applications. The application, governed by the Patent Cooperation Treaty grants the Company the right to file future national applications into treaty member jurisdictions, including important potential markets for the Company. The PCTs claim a library of phenethylamine and derivative drug development candidates and methods of use. One of the PCT applications claims a group of proprietary compounds identified by the Company’s research data as being important for further evaluation toward selection as potential therapeutics. The other PCT application includes claims and disclosures toward several other proprietary novel psychedelic compounds, including compounds with positive research data, meeting the Company’s internal research metrics.  

Tryp Therapeutics Inc.,  pharmaceutical company focused on developing psilocybin-based compounds for diseases with unmet medical needs, announced it has completed the training of psychotherapists for its upcoming Phase 2a clinical trial using synthetic psilocybin in combination with psychotherapy for over-eating disorders.  The training was conducted by Fluence, which is led by researchers and psychotherapists with direct experience in psychedelic clinical trials and is the foremost provider of psychotherapeutic training for health professionals that are administering psychedelic compounds to patients. 

Mind Medicine Inc.,  leading biotech company developing psychedelic-inspired therapies, has agreed to work with Forian Inc., a leading provider of evidence-based support for more comprehensive clinical and commercial decision-making. MindMed and Forian will collaborate to develop best practices for using real-world evidence information to help improve the health and lives of psychiatric patients. Forian has deep domain experience in RWE and outcomes studies and has developed a variety of information products to serve the healthcare industry.

Compass Pathways,a mental health care company dedicated to accelerating patient access to evidence-based innovation in mental health, has engaged Hamilton Morris, the research scientist and film-maker, as a full-time consultant, who will be working primarily at the COMPASS Discovery Center, based at University of the Sciences in Philadelphia (USciences) in the United States. Mr. Morris will be advising COMPASS on research related to new psychedelic compounds that could be developed into therapies in areas of unmet mental health need.

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