Creso’s acquisition of Halucenex Ltd exposes Australian investors to a market opportunity estimated to be worth US$100 billion.
Creso Pharmaceuticals Ltd (ASX:CPH) (FRA:1X8) has become the ASX’s first psychedelics stock by way of its acquisition of Canadian psychedelic medicine company Halucenex Ltd.
The move capitalises on growing interest in psychedelic medicines, which includes LSD and psilocybin mushrooms, as treatments for a range of mental illnesses such as post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression.
There’s plenty of science to back psychedelics’ possible use as therapeutics, and the global market opportunity is quite large: Canaccord Genuity has estimated its size at an eye-watering US$100 billion.
So, what is Creso Pharma looking at with its latest investment?
Increasing global interest
Psychedelics are a class of psychoactive substances that contain chemical compounds which can produce changes in perception, mood and cognitive processing, and they can be found both in nature and manufactured in a laboratory.
They have had something of a marketing problem, with many associating their use with the countercultural explosion of the 1960s.
But scientists have known about their therapeutic potential for a long time, and recent studies have shown their potential in treating depression, anxiety, substance addiction, PTSD and obsessive compulsive disorder.
Regulator and public acceptance of psychedelics’ therapeutic potential is on the rise – the US Food & Drug Administration deemed psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy as a ‘Breakthrough Therapy’ in late 2019 and expanded access to MDMA – a psychoactive drug more commonly known as ecstasy – to PTSD patients in clinical trials.