Little Green Pharma (LGP) is expanding into psychedelic medicines after being granted a Schedule 9 licence to supply psilocybin by the WA Department of Health.

The licence grants LGP the right to supply psilocybin to eligible licence holders under the Medicines and Poisons Act 2014 (WA) and marks the company’s entry into the burgeoning field of psychedelic drugs to treat mental illness.

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Currently classified as a Schedule 9 drug, psilocybin is a substance found in certain types of mushrooms that induces a psychedelic state through its action on the brain’s 5HT-2A serotonin receptors. It is being investigated globally for the treatment of mental illness when combined with psychotherapy. 

The treatment — known as “psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy” — is being applied to various mental health conditions including depression, PTSD and anxiety. 

LPG has established a special purpose subsidiary to investigate global developments in psychedelic medicine, appointing strategy consultant and corporate advisor Sean Duffy as its CEO. 

The company will leverage its existing cultivation and drug-manufacturing infrastructure and experience in botanical drug-based products to cultivate psilocybin mushrooms for use in medical research. It is in the process of expanding its Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) licence to cover psilocybin manufacturing at its WA production facility. 

LGP managing director Fleta Solomon

The company is also planning to sponsor a Perth-based clinical trial into psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy. 

Managing director Fleta Solomon said: “The field of psychedelics is a logical fit with our long-term stated goals of solving real patient problems and transforming their lives. 

“We have developed so much experience over the years through the cannabis industry and we genuinely believe we can now bring that to bear on the development of the psychedelics field in Australia. 

“The existing investment in our West Australian cannabis cultivation and manufacturing facility means we can meaningfully enter the field with minimal incremental capital spend.”

Dr Stephen Bright, co-founder and vice president of PRISM (an entity dedicated to the advancement of psychedelic research) and a senior lecturer in addiction at Edith Cowan University, has joined the LGP subsidiary’s clinical advisory board as its foundation member.