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What’s after cannabis? Investors set their sights on psychedelics

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As the cannabis industry still waits for the end of federal prohibition, forward-thinking investors have started to look at new investment opportunities. America’s relationship with drugs is changing, especially for substances with medical potential. The result is an open-minded atmosphere that can lead to innovation. 

Ten years ago, investors were told they were crazy to invest in cannabis. But on the cusp of a new decade, the cannabis industry is projected to bring in more revenue than the NFL, to the tune of $15 billion nationwide. 

After recognizing cannabis’s potential, investors are turning their sights to a new class of drugs: psychedelics. Specifically, the psychedelic compound found inside mushrooms, psilocybin. There’s plenty of opportunity for investors as cannabis spreads throughout the US, but for those who want an early presence in a potential industry, psilocybin could be next. 

The Drug Enforcement Agency classifies psilocybin mushrooms as a Schedule I drug. However, emerging research suggests psilocybin may be an effective treatment for:

Researchers are studying the compound’s effects and how it may benefit patients with intractable mental health disorders. Scientists are unsure exactly how psilocybin affects the brain, but anecdotal evidence suggests the compound puts users through an “ego death” that opens the mind. Just one dose of psilocybin, paired with a safe environment and trained medical professional, can lead to results

This isn’t just a pipe dream, either. Thanks to investors, forward-thinking institutions like the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) and Johns Hopkins’ Center for Psychedelic Research are just a few of the institutions studying the medical benefits of psychedelics. 

Where does this leave interested investors? It’s still early days for psilocybin investments. The best way to get in is to fund research. In fact, there’s a VC fund for psychedelics in Canada, which is poised to fund R&D.

Early cannabis investors are more risk-averse and may be looking to expand their horizons. Signs suggest that psychedelics are the next in line, and investors would do well to not only invest in research, but auxiliary technology that will develop alongside our understanding of psychedelics. 

Several municipalities, including Denver and Oakland, have already decriminalized psychedelics. Cannabis has set off a chain reaction that will not only improve our understanding of the substances around us, but hopefully find medical uses for these compounds. Pioneering investors should keep their ear to the ground: psychedelics could be a future addition to their portfolio.




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