Magic Mushroom Boom?
What are Magic Mushrooms?
Psilocybin as Medicine
Clinical studies, like the John Hopkins study, have shown the powerful mental health benefits of psychedelic mushrooms. More studies are under way around the world, hoping to put these little fungi to work healing people. Depression, PTSD, and end of life anxiety have been the specific focus of many studies.
There are over 300 million people, world wide, suffering from depression. One in six Americans are prescribed some form of psychiatric drug, and many of these are anti-depressants. Many of these medications carry side effects ranging from dry mouth to suicidal thoughts! Psilocybin mushrooms offer a different pathway to treating depression than the traditional pharmaceutical method, SSRI’s, with much fewer, and less severe side effects.
Over 8 million people experience Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, PTSD, every year. It is estimated that 8% of the population will experience PTSD at some point in their lives. Symptoms include severe anxiety, nightmares, and flashbacks so real, it is hard to distinguish from present reality. PTSD may express itself immediately following the traumatic event, but sometimes it may be years after the trauma. Studies have shown improvement in PTSD sufferers’ conditions even after only one session.
The John Hopkins study is now famous, having been discussed in mainstream stories, and on the popular podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience. Essentially, they took a group of terminal patients and, under standardized conditions, gave them either psilocybin/psilocin or a placebo. The magic mushroom group showed a significant decrease in anxiety. Basically, they cured these people’s fear of death!
Billion Dollar Industry
Right now there are only a few companies that make up the psilocybin mushroom field. Among those, Compass Pathways seems to be the clear leader. They gained “breakthrough therapy” status from the FDA last October, and are doing clinical trials in Europe and North American. Compass has the tools to succeed in bringing the psychedelic medicine to a doctor near you. Peter Thiel, the legendary Silicon Valley investor, has invested heavily into Compass Pathways. Pair Thiel with a team of top scientists, and Compass is likely to be the first producer of psilocybin based medicines.
Another company trying to cash in on psychedelic mushrooms, is Wuhan General Group China Inc. They are focused on CBD growing and processing, but have already said, they will also join the magic mushroom field. They aim to have a psilocybin/psilocin derived medicine within the next few years.