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Top 5 Psychedelic Milestones of 2022

The article Top 5 Psychedelic Milestones of 2022 was originally published on Microdose.

As we turn the final pages of 2022, it’s important to take a…



The article Top 5 Psychedelic Milestones of 2022 was originally published on Microdose.

As we turn the final pages of 2022, it’s important to take a moment to reflect upon the progress of the psychedelic movement. Since January, causes like decriminalization and psychedelic medicalization (legally treating mental health conditions with psychedelic therapy) have made great strides in helping push the industry forward. Let’s take a look at the top psychedelic milestones of 2022.


MAPS Moving MDMA-Assisted Therapy for PTSD Towards Legalization

In 2021, MAPS brought into focus the potential of MDMA-assisted therapy to treat PTSD by publishing results from a Phase 3 clinical trial showing that 88% of patients saw the severity of their symptoms decrease by at least 50%, and 67% improved so much that they “no longer qualified for a PTSD diagnosis after three treatment sessions.”

In 2022, the nonprofit kept its foot on the gas, launching and completing its second Phase 3 trial, MAPP2. For those who do not know, in order for a new medicine to gain approval from the American FDA and other international bodies such as Health Canada, the treatment must complete two successful Phase 3 trials.

At the time of writing, the results have yet to be released. That will likely happen in early 2022. However, at Wonderland 2022, MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin hinted the results will be positive. Either way, we will have to wait for official results to be released. According to Doblin, if the trial was a success, we could see legal MDMA-assisted therapy for the treatment of PTSD as early as 2024.



Ketamine-Assisted Therapy Shows Great Hope for the Treatment of Alcohol Use Disorder

Continuing the good news for psychedelics, in January, Awakn Life Sciences (NEO: AWKN, OTCQB: AWKNF) published the results of a Phase 2 a/b trial treating Alcohol Use Disorder with ketamine-assisted therapy.

It found that those who received ketamine-assisted therapy achieved “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.” Furthermore, the risk of relapse for those who completed the ketamine therapy regimen was 2.7 times less than for those who just received the therapy.

Perhaps most importantly, “there was also a significant decrease in the risk of mortality, 1 in 8 patients would have died within 12 months without treatment, that number decreased to 1 in 80 following the treatment.”

As 2022 comes to a close, Awakn is preparing to launch its Phase 3 trial, which will be funded by the UK National Health Service. If the Phase 3 trial can replicate the Phase 2 results, the hundreds of millions of people who suffer with alcohol addiction may be given hope.


Wonderland 2022 shows that the Psychedelic Movement is Growing

In November, Microdose held its second annual Wonderland Miami event. The three-day event brought together stakeholders from all walks of life, including business owners, decriminalization and legalization advocates, investors, indigenous shamans, governmental representatives, and scientists.

This event showed that interest in all aspects of the psychedelics space is growing rapidly. In order for a movement to make both societal and legal changes, it needs to build a broad coalition. Wonderland 2022 showed that psychedelics have such a coalition.


Rick Doblin presenting MAPS trial results at Wonderland


MindMed Inches LSD Towards FDA Approval with Completed Trial

Despite many retail investors abandoning MindMed (Nasdaq: MNMD, NEO: MMED) in the past year, in May the psychedelics company released positive data from a Phase 2 trial using LSD-assisted therapy as a treatment for anxiety disorders.

The study found that 65% of patients saw their anxiety levels drop by at least 30%, with the benefits lasting at least 6 weeks after treatment. As the study only measured up until 6 weeks after the treatment, it is possible that the benefits last longer.

Secondary measures in the study, such as depression levels, likewise were helped by the LSD-assisted therapy, while the treatment was well tolerated.

MindMed is now in the process of running a Phase 2b trial, attempting to treat Generalized Anxiety Disorder with LSD-assisted therapy. If that trial comes back with equally promising results, we are likely to see the first Phase 3 LSD trial late 2023, or early 2024.


Colorado Voters Decriminalize Natural Psychedelics, Legalize Psilocybin Healing Centers

During the November US midterm elections, Colorado voters said Yes to Proposition 122, which decriminalized natural psychedelics, and set in motion a plan to legalize psilocybin-assisted therapy by 2025.

Voting 53.6% in favor of the ballot measure, the state will be the second to legalize psilocybin healing centers, after Oregon.

There are three key aspects to the referendum that Colorado voters passed

  1. Decriminalizing the possession, personal use, and non-monetary gifting of “natural” psychedelics such as psilocybin and psilocin mushrooms, mescaline (but not in the form of peyote), ibogaine and DMT, for all adults 21 years of age and older. The sale of such psychedelics would remain illegal.
  1. Establishing “psilocybin healing centers” where adults can receive psilocybin-assisted therapy to treat mental health conditions such as PTSD and depression, though no doctor’s note would be needed.
  1. Allowing Coloradans who had been previously convicted and served their time for a crime now made legal to petition the courts to seal their record. If the District Attorney does not object, the court will automatically seal the case.


Looking Forward to 2023

If 2022 was a big year for psychedelics, 2023 will be even more massive, with many high-profile studies being conducted and results being released.

Stay tuned for more as Microdose looks forward to 2023.


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