Psilera, a Florida-based biotechnology company, has initiated preclinical studies with new psychedelic derivatives aimed at reducing alcohol consumption.
Psilera Inc., working in collaboration with University of South Florida (USF) researchers will conduct the first in vivo screening of psychedelic-inspired new chemical entities (NCEs) with the goal of helping those struggling with alcohol use disorder (AUD).
AUD is a growing addiction that affects 283 million people worldwide. More than 5% of all deaths are alcohol-related.
“We consider this an important step towards our understanding of psychedelic and psychedelic-inspired compounds, and their potential as future medicines in the field of addiction,” Dr. Jackie von Salm, co-founder and CSO of Psilera Inc, told Benzinga. “The growing prevalence of alcohol use disorder, especially in conjunction with the pandemic, needs to be addressed as the current methods of treatment are outdated and insufficient.”
In addition to Psilera’s NCEs, the psilocybin compound mimic psilacetin (“4-AcO-DMT”) will be used as a psychoactivity reference to determine its effects on alcohol consumption. Previous preclinical results have shown that 4-AcO-DMT produces effects analogous to psychedelics in humans, while also reducing opioid and nicotine dependences.
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