NEW YORK, May 20, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The global market for psychedelic drug treatments and therapy is in the early stages of what looks to be a massive shift. A growing wave of research has shown the power of psychedelics in offering effective treatments for mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, and more. Mentioned in today's commentary includes: Pfizer, Inc. (NYSE: PFE), Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE: TEVA), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), Merck & Co., Inc (NYSE: MRK), Allergan (AGN).
And this comes at a time when awareness of global health issues is on the rise worldwide...and as many are recognizing that psychedelics may actually be more effective than traditional treatments at treating these issues for many sufferers. And completely apart from this rapidly-growing mental health solutions market, demand for mushrooms as a functional food is projected to continue growing at a steady pace.
The global mushrooms as a functional food market is expected to reach $34.3 billion USD by 2024, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.04% from 2019-2024. One forward-thinking company – with a unique, dual-path business model – is right now offering investors what appears to us to be the smartest way to play the rapidly-growing psychedelics market for upside potential.
First, through its HAVN Labs division, the company is devoted to providing standardized psychedelic compound formulations for academic researchers and formulators...And second, through its HAVN Retail division, the company is developing and bringing to market custom formulations both directly to the consumer as well as with contract manufacturing (white labeling.)
The Psychedelic Supply Chain
Most of the companies in the industry are hoping to show that the products they're developing offer the best potential solutions or treatments to many of the most important mental health issues. And there's certainly nothing wrong with that approach, as these companies are doing critically important work.
Instead of looking at companies focused on the clinical model, the greater opportunity for investors may actually reside in those companies who are supplying the market in the most efficient way.
HAVN Life is a company that appears perfectly positioned to be in the supply chain of natural psychedelics to companies in an industry that is growing at a rapid pace. The company's HAVN Labs division is a GMP-compliant laboratory that is dedicated to the advancement and formulation of regulated and novel psychoactive compounds.
The company has secured a Health Canada exemption for its HAVN Labs facility. This exemption allows for the research and development of psychedelic compounds and the ability to conduct research in contemplation of securing its Licensed Dealer status.
At the moment, there are currently no formulas standardized across clinical studies of psychedelic compounds. Those studying psychedelics in research studies or academia are focused to rely on products that are developed ad hoc for each project. HAVN Life (HAVN; HAVLF) now stands poised to change that.
HAVN Labs intends to provide the standardized psychedelic compound formulations for academic institutions with isolates and extractions from its facility that will be utilized for clinical trials and as APIs for products.
Additionally, HAVN is part of a global community taking an active role in formulations and research for microdosing therapies, which have shown effectiveness in addressing mental health and performance.
In addition to the company's efforts to provide researchers and formulators with a safe supply of naturally derived compounds, the company has also launched a second division. This division – HAVN Retail – is a retail product division producing specially formulated natural health products and offers the opportunity for more immediate monetization. The retail business is developing custom formulations that address brain health and provide the potential for robust revenues and market growth, providing exposure to a rapidly-growing natural health product market that is projected to be worth $34.3 billion US globally by 2024.
Leveraging a highly experienced and proven management team with a recent track record of building natural health product brands, the company has already developed seven natural health formulations that are announced to soon be launching online and in stores with retail partners such as Nesters Market.
Experience Is Everything
Their Chief Scientific Officer Gary Leong was previously Chief Scientific Officer at Aphria from its inception in 2014. Mr. Leong established and oversaw the company's Quality Assurance, Quality Control, Regulatory Affairs and Research and Development functions.
Executive Chairman Vic Neufeld is the former CEO of Aphria and was CEO of Jamieson Laboratories for 21 years, Canada's largest manufacturer and distributor of natural vitamins, minerals and concentrated food supplements.
With the psychedelics market still in the early stages of what is projected to be a growth surge, investors are looking for the best ways to play this red-hot market. HAVN Life appears to offer a number of significant advantages over other companies in an industry that appears to be growing at an early stage pace.
Veteran Pharma Companies Are Taking New Approaches, As Well:
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the most commonly prescribed antidepressants. They include the Zoloft brand from Pfizer (PFE) . While Pfizer dominated headlines the past year due to its COVID-19 vaccine, the company's contributions to mental health cannot be ignored. Zoloft is one of the world's most recognizable antidepressants. The drug works by preventing the movement of serotonin back into nerve endings, essentially making the chemical more available for the body to use. This is important because low levels of serotonin have been linked to depression, anxiety, and even obsessive-compulsive behavior.
Pfizer's share price saw a lot of volatility over the past year, but the company remains one of the top drug producers on the planet, and as such, especially with its attractive dividends, Pfizer will likely be a safe investment for years to come.
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (TEVA) is another major pharmaceutical company that, largely due to its series of aggressive expansion and acquisitions has played a major role in helping patients get the treatment they need. In fact, its focus on generic, non-brand-name, medications have made treatment of depression more affordable than ever. Some of the medications it distributes include escitalopram, a generic version of the widely popular Lexapro, and venlafaxine, which some may recognize as Effexor.
Ketamine, a powerful anesthetic drug, and tranquilizer has in clinical trials shown immense benefits as a treatment for depression and anxiety in tiny micro-doses. And after years of resistance, the FDA is now approved on a limited basis the first-ever legal Ketamine drug—a nasal spray called Spravato used in treatment-resistant depression.
Spravato, developed by pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), another company which has received significant attention due to its COVID-19 vaccine, has also received widespread praise in the medical community. Not only is the medication the first of its kind, it has also had overwhelmingly positive benefits to the patients utilizing the drug. The drug showed improvement in depression symptoms for periods of time as long as four weeks.
Though patients are not able to use the medicine without direct supervision from a healthcare provider due to the side-effects, the procedure has proven to be safe and sustainable in the long run. This is huge news for individuals suffering from depression, and this new treatment could be an absolute game-changer over time.
The success of Spravato has also piqued the interest of Big Pharma firms. Allergan (AGN), primarily known for its Botox branded injection, is working to create a ketamine-like injectable depression treatment called Rapastinel. The company acquired the brand when it bought out Naurex for $560 million. While the drug was undergoing testing, it has hit a few snags along the way. Namely, in its most recent round of testing, it failed to differentiate from a placebo on the primary and key secondary endpoints.
MDMA, for its part, has a long and strange history dating back to 1912. It was created and patented by Merck & Co. (MRK). Rumor has it that the company was asked to create the medicine as an appetite suppressant for German soldiers before the first World War but was shelved later due to its bizarre side effects. The rumor has since been disproven by an investigation done by Merck which discovered that the drug was developed as a potentially lifesaving blood clot agent.
Since Merck's discovery of the chemical, however, it laid relatively dormant until the 1970s, eventually finding its way into the hands of Alexander Shulgin, a renowned chemist known for his experiments with psychedelic medication.
By. Chuck Smith
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This publication contains forward-looking information which is subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Forward looking statements in this publication include that the global wellness market will continue to increase and that demand for mushroom based supplements and nutraceuticals will grow; that the market for psychedelic mushrooms will continue to increase for research purposes focused on alternative mental health treatments; that psychedelics will gain regulatory, medical, commercial and social acceptance as a potential treatment for various mental and other illnesses; that HAVN can be a supplier of functional and psychedelic mushroom products; that HAVN can be a leader in scientific research and achieve a new standard in naturally derived psilocybin; that HAVN can successfully build out supply agreements with researchers and obtain supply agreements to create commercialized products; that HAVN will develop fungi-based nutraceutical products for the wellness market that will achieve Health Canada approval and be sold on e-commerce sites and by retailers; that HAVN can produce products using specialized extracts which have a greater therapeutic effect for patients; that psychedelic mushrooms will be decriminalized and gain acceptance as a viable medical treatment for mental illness; that HAVN will develop a state-of-the-art research lab and become a supplier for the psychedelic and functional mushroom markets; and that HAVN can carry out its business plans. These forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information. Risks that could change or prevent these statements from coming to fruition include that the global wellness market may not increase as anticipated and that demand for supplements, and in particular mushroom based supplements and nutraceutical based products may not increase; that the market for psychedelic mushrooms does not increase; that psychedelic mushroom based treatments are found to be dangerous, ineffective or have unwanted side effects; that psychedelics will fail to gain regulatory, medical, commercial and social acceptance as a potential treatment for various mental and other illnesses; that HAVN may be unable to develop its business as a supplier of functional and psychedelic mushroom products; that HAVN may fail to become a leader in scientific research or achieve a new standard in naturally derived psilocybin; that HAVN may fail to achieve supply agreements with researches or obtain supply agreements to create any additional commercialized products; even if they do successfully produce products, competitors may offer better and cheaper products; that HAVN's products may prove not effective; and that its intellectual property may be challenged as infringing on others' IP. The forward-looking information contained herein is given as of the date hereof and we assume no responsibility to update or revise such information to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by law.
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