Instagram Pulls Cerebral Ads; Schizophrenia RCTs Not Inclusive; LSD Tx’s in Pipeline

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Instagram pulled more than 30 ads running by mental health startup Cerebral for violating policies of using certain types of imagery to promote healthcare products. (Forbes)

Only about a fifth of real-world patients with schizophrenia were represented in randomized clinical trials (RCTs) — and this slim selection of patients tended to have better outcomes. “RCTs may become more inclusive by representing a broader spectrum of individuals with schizophrenia and by targeting specific currently underrepresented groups,” wrote researchers in JAMA Psychiatry.

As part of an international study, the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis received part of a $65 million NIH grant to study causes and implications of early schizophrenia in young people.

Over 85% of primary care practices that care for children said they have difficultly in obtaining mental health services for kids. “I hope our findings will help people understand how hard it’s been for pediatric primary-care physicians to fulfill their role on the frontline of behavioral health,” said lead study author Alyna Chien, MD, of Boston Children’s Hospital, in a statement. (Annals of Family Medicine)

BetterLife Pharma said it had a positive pre-investigational new drug meeting with the FDA regarding the company’s major depressive disorder treatment BETR-001 — a non-hallucinogenic derivative of lysergic acid diethylamide — better known as LSD.

And in related news, the FDA cleared Mind Medicine’s investigational new drug application to move forward with a phase IIb dose-optimization trial of MM-120, an investigational LSD-based treatment for generalized anxiety disorder in early 2022, the company announced.

It’s gearing up to be a big year for BioXcel Therapeutics, with its PDUFA date for BXCL501 — an investigational agitation treatment for patients with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder — coming up on April 5 after being pushed back from January. (Seeking Alpha)

An Ontario-based law firm announced it had launched a new class action lawsuit against the former St. Thomas Psychiatric Hospital for alleged abuse and use of experimental “treatment” on involuntary patients between 1976 and 1988.

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    Kristen Monaco is a staff writer, focusing on endocrinology, psychiatry, and nephrology news. Based out of the New York City office, she’s worked at the company since 2015.

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