Perth-based Little Green Pharma (ASX: LGP) is the latest listed cannabis company to move into the psychedelic space after announcing it today received a licence to supply psilocybin from the Western Australian Department of Health.
Currently classified as a Schedule 9 drug, psilocybin induces a psychedelic state through its action on the brain’s serotonin receptors and when combined with psychotherapy, is the subject of extensive global research for the treatment of mental illness.
The treatment program is known as “psychedelic assisted psychotherapy” and is being applied to various mental health conditions including depression, PTSD and anxiety.
LGP says receipt of the licence comes after it has been investigating global developments in psychedelic medicine and the evolving regulatory and policy environment in Australia.
In April 2021, the company appointed Shaun Duffy as the CEO of a subsidiary established for this purpose, and with the Schedule 9 licence for psilocybin LGP has cleared a major hurdle.
The company now intends to leverage its experience with producing and manufacturing medicinal cannabis to cultivate psilocybin mushrooms for use in medical research.
As such, LGP is currently engaged in extending its Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) licence to cover psilocybin manufacturing.
“The field of psychedelics is a logical fit with our long term stated goals of solving real patient problems and transforming their lives,” LGP managing director Fleta Solomon said.
“We have developed so much experience over the years through the cannabis industry and we genuinely believe we can now bring that to bear on the development of the psychedelics field in Australia.
“The existing investment in our West Australian cannabis cultivation and manufacturing facility means we can meaningfully enter the field with minimal incremental capital spend.”
LGP’s move follows Creso Pharma’s (ASX: CPH) acquisition of Canadian psychedelics company Halucencex for more than $7 million, which gave it a foothold in the growing global market for LSD, psilocybin and MDMA estimated to be worth up to US$100 billion.
Shares in LGP are up 3.92 per cent to $0.80 per share at 11.02am AEST.
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