Journey Colab is focused on unlocking the science of psychedelics to build a whole new model of addiction care combining the potential of neuroplasticity promoting therapeutics like mescaline with psychotherapy and community support. Their lead program is mescaline – one of the naturally-occurring classical psychedelics – for the treatment of Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) for patients in desperate need of durable remission. Their focus this year is building on the first modern natural data set on mescaline and are currently conducting the first industry-sponsored human trials.
Further, their Journey Reciprocity Trust is setting the industry standard for the “healing economy.” The Trust holds ten percent of the company’s founding equity for the future benefit of groups working to ensure equitable access to mental health treatment, those working on the conservation of naturally occurring psychedelics, and Indigenous communities that have traditionally used psychedelics.
What Makes Mescaline Particularly Effective In The Treatment Of AUD?
Founder and CEO, Jeeshan Chowdhury: “Mescaline is very interesting in that it’s the only phenethylamine in the classic psychedelic. It’s closer to MDMA than psilocybin, which is a tryptamine. When we look at both the traditional use of mescaline, what we’re seeing now with the rigorous scientific understanding of the mechanism of action, and the clinical studies, these long-acting psychedelics offer a unique advantage.”
Psychedelic Medicine + Therapy + Community Support?
“We know that traditional communities in traditional settings have used mescaline-containing plants for hundreds of years to deal with addiction. In communities that have been disproportionately affected by addiction in response to individual and systemic trauma, the use of mescaline-containing plants combined with therapy and community support shows to be one of the only effective treatments for alcohol use in their communities.”
Psychedelics Open A Period Of Relearning
“When people think about relearning periods, you can think about when a child is able to learn a language very easily, versus us trying to learn as adults. We know psychedelics can open critical windows of learning. It’s very clear now from scientific evidence that longer-acting psychedelics, like mescaline, open this period for not hours like ketamine, but weeks. We’re seeing a longer period of neuroplasticity, which lends itself to a chronic condition like Alcohol-Use Disorder where we’re trying to achieve behaviour change. When psychedelic medicine is combined with therapy and community support, we see the strongest effects.”
Reciprocity Built Into Business Model
“I would be negligent in trying to create any product or service and not include or learn from the only people who have done this at-scale, who have done it safely and effectively. It’s a business decision for us to create a space of dialogue with those communities to learn from each other. It’s not a charity, it’s not window-dressing. It makes us a better company and helps us make better decisions. We were able to learn the potential around mescaline because we set up Journey as a stakeholder model, created a space of dialogue, and understood the unique potential of mescaline that everyone else had overlooked.”