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Israeli Startup develops breakthrough psychedelic drugs treatment for PTSD

Madrigal Mental Care introduces its nanotechnology nasal spray for the treatment and prevention of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

breakthrough psychedelic drugs treatment for PTSD
Psilocybe Semilanceata / magic mushrooms /Wikipedia

Madrigal Mental Care, an Israeli biopharmaceutical startup, is developing a breakthrough delivery system for psychedelic drugs.

The company introduces its novel nanotechnology for the treatment and prevention of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) at Biomed Israel 2022 on Monday (today).

The sophisticated nanotechnology-based device is a revolutionary nasal spray that permits the transfer of organic nanoparticles from the nose to the brain.

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These biodegradable nanoparticles encapsulate molecules of hallucinogenic compounds, including psilocybin, the primary element in magic mushrooms, as well as ketamine, mescaline, MDMA, and others. The nanotechnology was developed by Professor Amnon Sintov of the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) and licensed by BGN Technologies, the university’s Technology Transfer Company.

Prof. Sintov noted that many studies suggest the benefits of utilizing modest dosages of psychedelic substances to treat mental problems such as PTSD, depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and even addiction. “Due to their potent effect on the human brain, it is crucial to administer these medications safely and accurately. Our innovative nanotechnology platform encapsulates exact pharmacological dosages in nanoparticles that are administered directly to the brain by intranasal spray in a very effective, rapid, and safe way.”

“Our technique permits the rapid and precise administration of psychotropic drugs. The nanoparticles are biodegradable and give a major stability and accuracy advantage over conventional methods, “David Gabay, Co-Founder and Chairman of Madrigal Mental Care, remarked. “Studies conducted in vitro by Professor Shimon Ben-Shabat of the Department of Biochemistry and Pharmacology at BGU indicate that the psilocybin levels utilized in the nanoparticles had a positive effect on inflammatory brain cell cultures.

“We are presently initiating preclinical research with rats to obtain effectiveness and safety approvals to start first-in-human clinical trials next year. We are confident that this innovative technology, which offers a fresh approach, will advance the area of psychedelic-based treatments for the benefit of millions of individuals across the world suffering from chronic and acute mental illnesses such as PTSD and depression.”

People who undergo stressful or life-threatening circumstances may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms may manifest within a month of a traumatic occurrence or years later and include considerable challenges in social and professional settings and interpersonal interactions. People with PTSD have difficulty doing daily tasks for a lengthy time.

In general, there are four categories of PTSD symptoms: intrusive memories, avoidance, unfavorable changes in cognition and mood, and changes in physical and emotional reactions. An estimated 3.5% of American adults had PTSD in the last year.

Psychotherapy and medicines that influence the neurotransmitters serotonin or norepinephrine are conventional treatments for PTSD (SSRIs and SNRIs).

In recent years, there has been a growing interest in treating PTSD using psychedelic substances such as psilocybin (a 5HT2A agonist), MDMA (formerly known as Ecstasy), and lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD). Since 2019, around 40 clinical trials examining psychedelics for the treatment of mental disorders, including PTSD, have been initiated. The remission rate of current therapy is roughly 50% at best, highlighting the need for a unique strategy.

Two months following therapy with MDMA for PTSD, 67 percent of individuals in the MDMA group no longer met the diagnostic criteria for PTSD, compared to 32 percent in the placebo group. According to Databridge, the medicinal market for psychedelics is predicted to reach $40 billion by 2027.

Dr. Galit Mazooz Perlmuter, Senior Vice President of Business Development, Bio-Pharma at BGN Technologies, remarked, “There is an urgent need for improved therapies for PTSD and other mental diseases. We have submitted a patent application to safeguard this novel technique, a prime example of the innovative technology developed by leading scientists at Ben-Gurion University.”



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