Psychedelics are being studied and used for a variety of human mental health and wellness, with some psilocybin products mixed into other substances to enhance their effect.
There are a wide variety of psilocybin-infused chocolates. Chocolate by itself carries a wealth of psychoactive substances—even phenylethylamine, which is chemically similar to amphetamine.
There are also plenty of psilocybin-infused coffees as well—some available in a standard K-cup. Caffeine has been called the most widely used psychoactive substance in the world. In Western society, at least 80% of the adult population consumes caffeine in amounts large enough to have an effect on the brain, according to a study.
But there is little evidence of how psychedelics interact with these and other psychoactive substances, such as cannabis. That is changing.
A 2021 study explored the subjective effects of psychedelics when used alongside cannabis with 321 participants who completed a set of online surveys at 2 time points: 7 days before, and 1 day after a planned experience with a psychedelic.
The collected data included demographics, setting, and five validated questionnaires: the mystical experience questionnaire, the visual subscales of altered states of consciousness questionnaire, the challenging experience questionnaire, the ego dissolution inventory, and the emotional breakthrough inventory.
What researchers discovered is that the simultaneous use of cannabis together with classic psychedelics was associated with a more intense psychedelic experience. “Results imply a possible interaction between the cannabis and psychedelic on acute subjective experiences; however, design limitations hamper our ability to draw firm inferences on directions of causality and the clinical implications of any such interactions,” the study concluded.
Now CaaMTech, Inc., a five-year-old psychedelic drug discovery company that recently completed completion a $22 million Series A financing round, is building a line of products based on the psychedelics-plus-cannabis concept.
It has been granted a patent to develop a combination cannabis-psilocybin composition that is turning heads in the psychedelics industry. According to a press release announcing the patent, CaaMTech has shown that cannabinoids work synergistically with psychedelic tryptamines in producing their effects.
The patent application, “Compositions and methods comprising a psilocybin derivative” (US20180221396A1), allowed by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in February 2021, notes that aside from a few studies on purified psilocybin, the idea of new compositions combining psilocybin with other substances is unique. “No efforts have been made to modulate its properties with formulating agents or other ingredients. No efforts have been made to formulate particular combinations or doses of psilocybin derivatives or combinations with other active molecules. No efforts have been made to formulate psilocybin into compositions capable of modifying activity at one or more neurotransmitter receptors.”
The patent goes on to describe a series of combinations of psilocybin with various cannabinoids, in a formulation such as gummies, dried powder, and pills.
CaaMTech has filed over 100 other patent applications since filing this patent in 2017.
A psilocybin plus cannabis product line is an interesting concept. But a high level of THC can cause certain psychedelic experiences on its own. What could a combination effect be like?
One study found that high doses of cannabis can create subjective effects comparable to those identified in trials of psilocybin. “Given the disparate mechanisms of action, comparing THC-induced to psilocybin-induced effects might improve our understanding of the mechanisms underlying subjective experiences,” the study concluded.
But there does seem to be some mental health therapeutic advantage to combining both, at least in a clinical setting for now.
Cannabis has been studied for potential psychiatric assistance, as outlined in one study, but there is still not enough information to back that up. “Currently the evidence is nascent and too weak to recommend cannabinoid-based interventions for a range of psychiatric disorders,” the study concluded.
Going forward, CaaMTech’s patented concept has stirred up new research to better understand how psilocybin works in the human body, why it does what it does, and how it can work with or be enhanced by other substances for better wellness outcomes.
September 15, 2022 at 3:07 pm
Business journalist Goodman works out of the Washington, D.C., metro region. He has written feature pieces on a range of subjects for many magazines on cannabis and psychedelics as well as general business/lifestyle periodicals. Hodes was chosen by Americans for Safe Access as the 2018 Journalist of the Year. He serves as the deputy booking agent for the National Press Club Headliners Committee and is a member of the National Press Club.