Therapy Shake-Up Called for by Mental Health Experts Seeking Solutions for Mental Health Crisis

Therapy Shake-Up Called for by Mental Health Experts Seeking Solutions for Mental Health Crisis

VANCOUVER – USA News Group – According to a new report by a team of 25 experts from 11 different countries estimates that approximately 5% of the world’s adult population is living with depression. Experts from the Lancet-World Psychiatric Association Commission are now calling for a “whole-of-society response to reducing the global burden of depression”—as studies indicate 70-80% of people who die by suicide in high-income countries suffer from mental illness, of which depression is the most common cause. Back in 2018, another Lancet Commission estimated a mental health crisis could cost the world $16 trillion by 2030. In order to tackle this serious issue, new treatments and prevention therapies are being developed by groups such as newly IPO’d Doseology Sciences Inc. (CSE:MOOD), Field Trip Health Ltd. (NASDAQ:FTRP) (TSX:FTRP), Numinus Wellness Inc. (TSX:NUMI) (OTC:NUMIF), AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV), and Seelos Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:SEEL).

Thinking outside of the box, there are more than 80 companies are devoted to developing or administering psychedelic compounds. Venture Capitalists are racing to fund alternative mental health therapies. As well, significant research has also shown positive effects from certain herbs or mushrooms known as adaptogens with respect to stress reduction, resistance to mental fatigue, and improved attention capacity. Now the functional mushroom market is growing rapidly at a CAGR of 6.1% towards US$572 billion globally by 2028.

Meeting this demand, Doseology Sciences Inc. (CSE:MOOD) announced a soft launch of seven new adaptogenic mushroom products earlier this year in the United States, while also officially launching its medicinal mushroom product line (consisting of five products) in Canada in late February 2022.

"This launch is the culmination of extensive product development, market testing, and months of planning," said Doseology’s new CEO Maryam Marissen. "We're proud to finally deliver the benefits of nootropic medicinal mushrooms to our home market. We believe our strong brand, proprietary formulations, GMP standardization, and easy-to-use products will make our medicinal mushrooms the go-to brand in Canada."

Launching in Canada makes sense, as experts in the market are openly supportive towards approvals of psychedelics and mushroom-based drugs. Doseology’s products address different segments of the market, including mood and depression, attention and focus, sleep and recovery, and anxiety.

Their proprietary formulations pair adaptogenic botanicals with vitamins for increased efficacy that make extensive use of natural mushroom fruiting bodies. These combinations include pairing adaptogens such as ginger, turmeric, yerba mate, and several mushroom species, with proven functional mushrooms such as lion's mane, reishi, shiitake, maitake, royal sun, turkey tail, and others. Blending these formulations delivers enhanced health and wellness benefits over single-ingredient products.

Another Canadian entry tackling mental illness through alternative means is Field Trip Health Ltd. (NASDAQ:FTRP) (TSX:FTRP), which owns and operates a chain of clinics in the US and Canada that treat PTSD with ketamine. One recent opening in New Brunswick recently received positive coverage from the CBC, having treated a veteran who’d come close to giving up.

Now Field Trip has announced a strategic partnership with Cerebral, the fastest growing online mental health platform. The partnership allows Cerebral clinicians to refer qualified clients to Field Trip Health's ketamine assisted therapy, while Field Trip will connect potential clients seeking general psychiatry and teletherapy services to Cerebral.

"Our partnership with Cerebral will lower the barriers of entry into ketamine assisted therapy for many people who have solely been exposed to generalized psychiatry or might have not been presented with an alternative of exploring a healing journey propelled through psychedelics," said Ronan Levy, Field Trip's Executive Chairman. "Together we will help change the mental health landscape by bringing together teletherapy, telepsychiatry, and psychedelic-assisted therapy and offer more comprehensive benefits to consumers' mental health."

Following an upgrade of its research facility, the Public Health Agency of Canada recently approved Numinus Wellness Inc. (TSX:NUMI) (OTC:NUMIF) for a Containment Level 2 (CL2) pathogens and toxins license. Their aim is to contribute novel data on natural psychedelics, presenting additional IP opportunities and another revenue driver through contract research services.

"With this new license, Numinus is more committed than ever to advancing psychedelic research from theory to practice," said Payton Nyquvest, CEO and founder, Numinus. "By investigating optimal growth, bioavailability and pharmacokinetics, we are moving closer to developing therapeutics at scale to support accessible psychedelic-assisted therapy."

The license is in addition to Numinus Bioscience's existing Controlled Drugs and Substances Dealer's License from Health Canada and underscores their long-term strategy of establishing a center of excellence for natural psychedelic research, including extensive license amendments and investment into state-of-the-art equipment such as the Orbitrap, which identifies metabolites in the body and will play a key role in the PK and pre-clinical studies.

In Australia, Seelos Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:SEEL) recently received an acknowledgement letter from the Australian Government of Health Therapeutic Goods Administration for a pilot study of its asset SLS-005 in Alzheimer’s disease.

However, Seelos’s other property SLS-002 is an intranasal racemic ketamine, that the company back in July 2021 began dosing patients with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)—which is one of the most common mental disorders in the U.S., with an estimated 21 million adults reporting at least one major depressive episode in 2020.

"SLS-002 demonstrated a rapid onset of action, impressive efficacy and a sustained improvement from the first dose through the end of the study, including the group mean meeting the MADRS remission criteria initially on Day 6 after only 2 doses," said Raj Mehra, Ph.D., Chairman and CEO of Seelos. "Meeting these early criteria for response and remission is highly encouraging considering that these patients were not only severely depressed but also acutely suicidal."

Another prominent MDD treatment under development is Vraylar, which developers AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV) have ambitions for more than $4 billion in sales. Already used as a schizophrenia and bipolar drug, Abbvie are seeking this as an add-on treatment for patients with MDD who are already on antidepressants.

"Many people living with major depressive disorder struggle to find a treatment that reduces their depressive symptoms, with many taking years to find the right treatment,” said Michael Severino, M.D., vice chairman and president of AbbVie. “[Vraylar], when added to ongoing antidepressant treatment in patients with major depressive disorder, demonstrated that it can reduce depressive symptoms.”

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