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'Psyched': Compass IPO, UC Berkeley's Psychedelics Center, Jaguar Health's Entheogen Initiative

September 20, 2020 9:36 am
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Compass IPO Begins Trading on NASDAQ

Following a NASDAQ filing earlier this month, UK-based psychedelics research company Compass Pathways began trading under the symbol CMPS on Friday.

This is the first time a psychedelics company is listed on a major U.S. stock exchange.

Some 7.5 million shares are offered at a price of $17 per share. Total gross proceeds will amount to $127.5 million. The company has stated they expect the offering to close on or around Sept. 22.

Compass is currently at phase 2 trials for a proprietary formulation of psilocybin called COMP360.

ATAI Life Sciences is Compass’ largest shareholder. Another early backer is PayPal co-founder and Facebook investor Peter Thiel, who owns a 7.54% share in the company.

UC Berkeley Launches Psychedelics Research Center

The University of California in Berkeley announced the start of a new Psychedelics Research And Education Center, adding to an impressive list of higher education institutions opening psychedelics research programs, which include John Hopkins University, Imperial College of London and the University of Toronto.

The UC Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics was launched thanks to an anonymous donation of $1.25 million in seed funding. The university said it will look to collaborate with other research institutions and universities in the common goal of expanding access to psychedelic therapy.

The center will commence experiments using psilocybin as it researches cognition, perception and emotion along with their biological bases in the human brain.

A public education program will also be developed, with the aims of training guides or “facilitators”, which are the professionals in charge of accompanying patients during psychedelic experiences.

Mydecine Looks Into Spin Out of Cannabis Assets

Mydecine Innovations Group Inc. (CSE:MYCO) (OTC:MYCOF) a Denver-based psychedelics and mycology company, announced on Tuesday the formation of a special committee to evaluate the possible spin out of some of its less successful cannabis assets in order to increase shareholders value.

Mydecine Innovations was formed in May of this year from the amalgamation of Mydecine Group, a private fungi research company from Colorado and New Leaf Brands, a public cannabis company which used to trade under the symbol NLB.

Following the merger, New Leaf changed its name to Mydecine Innovations as a vehicle for the former to go public. The company retained its cannabis assets.

CEO Joshua Bartch told Benzinga in June that Mydecine was already exploring the best ways to manage its cannabis properties.

“We're looking at what’s the best positioning as a company moving forward for those specific assets, whether that potentially could be a spin out and/or those assets take their own path in your own separate vehicle and/or maybe they operate in a separate division,” he said.

Jaguar Health Launches Entheogen Therapeutics Initiative 

Pharmaceuticals company Jaguar Health Inc. (NASDAQ:JAGX) launched a scientific strategy team to support its recently-launched Entheogen Therapeutics Initiative.

The initiative expects to discover and develop novel natural medicines derived from psychoactive plants to treat mood disorders, neurodegenerative diseases, addiction, and other mental health disorders.

So far, Jaguar has specialized in the development and commercialization of plant-based human gastrointestinal pharmaceuticals, as well as pharmaceuticals for animals. The company has a  proprietary library of approximately 2,300 medicinal plants.

"Jaguar is thrilled to be leading this effort to potentially uncover a pipeline of novel psychoactive plant-based compounds, engage with recognized leaders in this space, and share our findings with potential corporate partners with the goal of developing plant-based compounds into possible medical breakthroughs," said Jaguar president and CEO Lisa Conte.

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