Partnership to develop a microneedle patch for delivering psychedelic pharmaceuticals

The Terasaki Institute is partnering with PharmaTher to adapt a microneedle drug delivery patch for the micro-dosing of psychedelics.

abstract brain surrounded by swirling psychedelic colours - idea of psychedelic drug delivery for mental illness etc

Researchers have developed a novel microneedle patch for drug delivery which is now being adapted for microdosing of psychedelic compounds, such as MDMA (a methamphetamine), LSD and psilocybin (magic mushrooms), when treating severe pain, anxiety, depression and other mental illnesses.

The Terasaki Institute for Biomedical Innovation (TIBI)’s microneedle patch, GelMA, for drug delivery is made from a gelatinous substance. It contains tiny microneedles on its surface which would include the drug or combination of drugs to be administered. Upon application to the skin, the microneedles penetrate the surface and then biodegrade, releasing their drug loads beneath the surface of the skin in a controlled manner that can be tuned for dosage and timed release.

While the original patch was developed for a variety of uses, including drug delivery and stem cell and gene therapies, TIBI has now partnered with PharmaTher Inc. to develop microneedle patches specifically for delivery of psychedelic pharmaceuticals for medical needs. PharmaTher is focused on the research and development of psychedelic pharmaceuticals and together with TIBI will work to develop the patches for use of their products in alternative treatment approaches.

While some may think of psychedelic pharmaceuticals as being dangerous and detrimental, recent experiments and clinical trials have obtained positive results when testing them for medical use. So far, successful outcomes have been achieved when using psychedelics for treating conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder and addictions to alcohol and smoking. In many cases, these treatments have benefited individuals who had unsuccessfully tried to treat their conditions by other methods.

“We are excited to work with the Terasaki Institute and the inventors of the GelMA delivery technology, as it enables a solid foundation to expedite the product and clinical development for a first-of-a-kind microdosing delivery system to treat serious unmet medical needs,” said Fabio Chianelli, Chief Executive Officer of PharmaTher. “Our focus is pursuing prescription-based psychedelic pharmaceuticals for FDA and international regulatory approval and unlocking the potential therapeutic value of these compounds via TIBI’s microneedle patch.”