The Vancouver-based company says it has overcome the challenges of natural extraction with its new technology, which can produce superior psilocybin at a lower cost.
The race to provide the psychedelics industry with the cheapest and most effective psilocybin is on, and Filament Health thinks it is in the lead.
The Vancouver-based psychedelic drug development company has become the first public company to receive a patent from the Canadian Intellectual Property Office for the extraction and standardization of natural psilocybin and other compounds from psychoactive mushrooms.
The patent covers Filament Health’s technology that can transform variable psychedelic raw materials into pharmaceutical-grade, standardized extracts. As a result, the company says it has overcome the challenges of natural extraction with its new technology, and that it can produce superior psilocybin at a lower cost.
The company says that by leveraging decades of natural extraction experience, it has been able to extract and standardize stable doses of natural psilocybin, overcoming issues of crop-to-crop and flush-to-flush variability.
Psilocybin naturally occurs in “magic mushrooms,” however, extracting the compound is difficult. Challenges include poor yields, stability, and repeatability. As a result, chemically synthesized psilocybin — where the drug does not directly involve the use of psychedelic mushrooms but is created as the result of one or more chemical reactions — is industry standard.
Filament Health CEO Benjamin Lightburn says the company is proud to be leading the industry with the first issued natural psilocybin extraction patent. “We know that nature is a valuable source of medicine, but that certain technologies are necessary to bring natural products up to a pharmaceutical-grade — most importantly, through standardization.”
Another company pursuing the standardized extraction of psychedelic compounds is Havn Life Sciences, which is also based in Vancouver. The company, in partnership with Jamaican-based GMP manufacturer P.A. Benjamin, this week announced the harvest of its first crop of psilocybin-containing mushrooms in Kingston which will support Havn Life Science’s goal of producing quality-controlled and standardized psychedelic products for research and clinical trials.
Significant milestones are also being reached in relation to the chemical synthesis of psilocybin. Researchers at the Friedrich Schiller University in Jena, Germany, were the first to successfully synthesize psilocybin in a lab just four years ago, in 2017.
This discovery has paved the way for the commercial production of psilocybin, with many drug development companies now pursuing proprietary psilocybin synthesis processes. Earlier this week, Mindset Pharma announced that it had filed a patent for its quick and cheap psilocybin synthesis method. The company said its synthesis process is the most cost-effective method available because it is impractical to extract psilocybin from mushrooms.