DEA Delay Leaves Synthetic Psychedelics in Legal Limbo

Psychedelics are currently experiencing a renaissance that has been characterized by a significant surge in scientific research, public interest and reform efforts. Said to be effective against mental health conditions such as eating disorders, anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, psychedelics have been subject to several legislative efforts across the country as activists have tried to get them legalized for medical use.

There are a wide variety of psychedelics, including a class of artificial psychedelics that are synthesized in a laboratory rather than extracted from a natural source.

In 2021, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) announced that it was planning on classifying five little-known psychedelics as Schedule I drugs, outlawing their development, purchase and use, and making it almost impossible to research them. However, the DEA backed down on its decision to criminalize the five obscure psychedelics in late July and sent the hallucinogenic compounds back to the Department of Health and Human Service for review.

While the DEA’s decision was a major win for companies that are focused on psychedelics research and development, it is still a temporary victory. The long-term fate of these mind-altering drugs continues to hang in the balance, and regulators are still considering how to handle artificial or designer psychedelics that are designed to mimic the effects of natural psychedelics such as psilocybin.

Even though these drugs have the potential to become alternative mental health treatments, and generate millions of dollars for the companies that develop these treatments, we still have plenty to learn about psychedelics and how their use can affect public health.

Matthew Baggot, CEO of Tactogen, a company that focuses on designer chemicals that resemble MDMA, stated that the entire psychedelic research space would become a lot more expensive and advance slowly if the DEA rescheduled the five psychedelics. After all, it is federal prohibition that has basically made it impossible to research psychedelics in the past couple of decades.

Now that more states are loosening their psychedelic policies, criminalizing the substances could set back psychedelics research by decades. Baggot, who has overseen Tactogen as it researches hundreds of chemicals that are similar to MDMA, was prepared to testify at the DEA hearing because some of the chemicals the company studies would have been affected by the DEA’s proposed ban.

This is because the ban would have impacted dozens of chemicals, not just the five psychedelics the DEA was looking to ban: 5-MeO-AMT, 5-MeO-MiPT, 5-MeO-DET, DiPT, and  4-OH-DiPT. Now that the DEA has shelves its plan to schedule the five psychedelics, the industry eagerly awaits a legislative decision from the government.

This regulatory gray area could in some way hamper the progress of psychedelics industry actors such as Delic Holdings Corp. (CSE: DELC) (OTCQB: DELCF) that depend on regulatory certainty to plan their future development programs.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Delic Holdings Corp. (CSE: DELC) (OTCQB: DELCF) are available in the company’s newsroom at

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