Welcome to Psychedelic Alpha.

Independent data-driven reporting, analysis and commentary on the psychedelics space: from business and drug development through to policy reform and culture.

Plus incubation, consultancy, and advisory for this emerging field. 

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Our latest insights

Developing Esketamine (Spravato) and Lessons for Psychedelic Drug Developers with Jaskaran Singh

Josh Hardman sits down with Jaskaran (‘Jaz’) Singh, who spearheaded the development of esketamine for treatment-resistant depression, now marketed as Spravato. We discuss how Singh’s early work assessing ketamine’s antidepressant effects at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) encouraged him to move into industry; how his team decided to pursue esketamine; lessons learned that might be relevant for psychedelic drug developers; and his broader outlook on the field.

MindMed’s ‘Total Elimination’ of Psychotherapy in LSD Study Stokes Debate Around Its Role in Psychedelic Therapies

In March, MindMed scored an FDA Breakthrough Therapy Designation for its LSD-D-tartrate candidate (MM120) for generalised anxiety disorder (GAD). Here, Josh takes a closer look at the company’s claim to have ‘eliminated’ psychotherapy from its Phase 2b study of MM120 and explores how a ‘Spravato-isation’ of psychedelic therapies is stoking broader debates around the contribution of psychotherapy in psychedelic therapies or ‘treatments’.

Senator Kirk Cullimore on Utah’s MDMA and Psilocybin Pilot Program

Josh Hardman speaks with the chief sponsor of Utah SB 266, which became law last month. The bill sees the creation of a pilot program that allows MDMA and psilocybin therapies to be administered at two health systems in the Beehive State. Questions remain, however, around the likelihood of these health systems engaging in such activity, as well as potential repercussions from federal agencies and professional bodies alike.

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INCUBATION & GROWTH

Entrepreneurs and Startups

Whether you’re at the idea-formation stage or raising early-stage funding, we’re here to help across the entire psychedelic value chain and company life-cycle.

ADVISORY & CONSULTANCY

Investors and Corporates

We help investors and corporates of all stripes understand and support the psychedelics space: from syndicates and VCs through to institutions.

INSIGHTS & ANALYSIS

Psychedelic Insiders and the Curious

Join our newsletter to stay abreast of the rapidly emergent psychedelics industry: from clinical trials and patents through to healing centres and decriminalisation.

The Psychedelic Renaissance

After a half-century of prohibition, psychedelics are once again entering the mainstream.

Today’s so-called “psychedelic renaissance” is represented by a seemingly exponential increase in research and development activity, billions of dollars of funding, psychedelic policy reform initiatives and successes across the world, and changing public perceptions.

Clinical Trials

Psychedelic Clinical Trials Started

Clinical trials involving psychedelics started, per year

 Phase 3 trials of MDMA-assisted therapy have been completed, with Phase 3 study of psilocybin underway.

$4+ billion

Invested in public and private psychedelic companies since 2020.

Psychedelic policy reforms are gaining pace at the federal, state and local level in the U.S. and internationally.

80.9%

of psychiatrists agreed that psychedelics show promise in treating psychiatric disorders.

Barnett et al., 2023

On “Alpha”

‘Alpha’, in the investing world, refers to an excess return on investment relative to a benchmark. But we broaden the definition of alpha on both ends to include more than just economic returns on more than just economic investments.

Instead, we conceptualise alpha as the excess return on myriad investments that people may make in the present and future of psychedelics: beyond economic capital, people might invest time, energy, and effort, for example. And that excess return might not be (purely) financial, it might also be realised through a more impactful treatment paradigm for mental health, for example, where the ‘benchmark’ is the inadequate status quo.

All this to say, we’re not only for investors. In fact, most of our readers aren’t: many of them are practitioners, regulators, entrepreneurs, and so on.