Cybin and Kernel collaborate to develop psychedelic therapies informed by brain imaging
When someone asks the innocuous question “how are you?” unless your immediate and detached response is “good,” where do you actually go within yourself to retrieve that information?
If we have a hard time pinpointing how we feel during our regular waking state, the difficulty of communicating a profound psychedelic trip while in it, is impossible by comparison.
Imagine a device that was able to accurately quantify brain function during a trip, essentially answering the question “how are you?” without the guesswork. While psychiatrists and therapists rely primarily on information in a person’s mind to inform solutions, no matter how detailed and useful, the answer remains subjective. Where words fail, data talks. This is your brain on tech
Canadian biotechnology company Cybin Inc (NEO:CYBN), which is developing psilocybin-based treatments for psychiatric illness and holds 10 patents covering therapeutic molecules and delivery systems., is collaborating with Kernel, a Los Angeles-based company innovating neuroimaging for drug development, with the use of their technology Flow. The device–a headset that resembles the marriage between a bicycle helmet and a fractured eggshell–will be used to conduct studies that aim to quantify the psychedelic experience in real-time and inform the development of future therapies, Lucid News writes.
Although neuroimaging technology is non-invasive, it can still cost millions of dollars to operate, take up a lot of space, and is time-consuming to use on patients on a regular basis.
Flow shrinks the price tag and the physical size down to something manageable. Flow is described as using beams of light through the skin into the skull that measures its scattering and absorption in the brain through sensors positioned around the headset, providing a safe and cost-efficient means to understand what happens during a psychedelic experience to assess the efficacy of various treatments and compounds.
Where technology meets human potential
In 2013, the National Institutes of Health joined with several other federal agencies to launch the Brain Research through Advancing Innovating Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative. The project is slated to invest $4.5 billion over 10 years in an effort to map brain circuits, understand patterns of electrical and chemical activity in those circuits and explore how their interplay creates cognitive and behavioral capabilities.
Kernel’s study on sleep and cognition followed 12 subjects who wore the Flow device three times a week for 60 minutes per day. Among the participants was founder and CEO, Bryan Johnson, who remarked that one of the most interesting findings during the six-week study was the connection between his own willpower, as measured by an “impulse control task” and how much deep sleep the Flow device recorded him receiving.
He told Lucid News, that he has always been interested in the potential of psychedelics to alter the human condition for the better. His aspiration is to see every house equipped with a Flow device by 2030.
Cybin is a leading biotechnology company focused on progressing psychedelic therapeutics by utilizing proprietary drug discovery platforms, innovative drug delivery systems, novel formulation approaches and treatment regimens for psychiatric disorders.