Optimi Health and Kwantlen Polytechnic University Applied Genomics Centre Partner to Advance Mushroom Science and Research

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, April 23, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Optimi Health Corp. (CSE: OPTI) (OTCQX: OPTHF) (FRA: 8BN), a leading Health Canada licensed psychedelics pharmaceutical manufacturer, is thrilled to announce an innovative research and development partnership with the Kwantlen Polytechnic University Applied Genomics Centre (KPU-AGC). The project, entitled, “Genetic Identification of Psilocybin Containing Mushroom,” will utilize KPU-AGC’s state-of-the-art genomics technology to unravel the intricate genetic makeup of Optimi’s psilocybin-containing mushrooms, potentially paving the way for unprecedented advancements in the field of Psilocybin genetics.

Optimi boasts an extensive genetic bank of over 200 psilocybin-containing mushroom strains, making it among the largest globally. The Company aims to produce mushrooms rich in psilocybin and other related tryptamine alkaloids.

Dr. Preston A. Chase, Chief Science Officer at Optimi, expressed enthusiasm for the partnership and its potential impact on mushroom science and research. "The Kwantlen Polytechnic University Applied Genomics Centre brings a wealth of experience and expertise in genomics research, making it an ideal partner for Optimi’s innovative initiatives in mushroom science,” he added.

Optimi Head of Mycology and Cultivation, Scott Marshall, added, “This work will be exceptionally valuable for establishing a baseline of the genetic identity of the various species of psilocybin-containing mushrooms being cultivated at Optimi now and in the future. This knowledge will help to deliver batch-to-batch consistency, an important development in the production of drug candidates containing natural psilocybin.”

Through the partnership, Optimi seeks to enhance its DNA characterization abilities, enabling precise species and strain-level identification of mushroom genetics for potential use in clinical trials and authorized medicinal activities. Objectives of the project include:

  1. DNA mushroom extraction: the AGC will first extract DNA from 20 mushrooms of the Psilocybe and Panaeolus species cultivated from Optimi’s genetics laboratory, using the cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) method.
  2. Species Identification by interspaced transcribed spacer (ITS) Sequencing: extracted DNA from the 20 selected samples will undergo ITS sequencing to create a genotyping protocol for species identification.
  3. Strain-level ID by SNPs derived from ddRAD-sequencing: the development of a novel method for strain-level identification, making this the first study that will provide single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data for Psilocybe and Panaeolus strains.

KPU Bio-Innovation Lab director, Dr. Paul Adams, commented, “The advanced genetic tools and expertise of the Applied Genomics Centre at KPU continue to produce valuable results for industry. Working with Health Canada licensed partners such as Optimi Health, we are able to ensure our partners achieve consistency for their products and achieve the best results for their research.”

Optimi and the KPU-AGC are committed to collaboration and innovation in the pursuit of advancing Health Canada approved psychedelic research.

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Optimi Health Corp. is a leading Health Canada licensed psychedelics pharmaceutical manufacturer, specializing in controlled substances such as natural psilocybin and MDMA, as well as functional mushrooms that focus on the health and wellness markets. Built with the purpose of producing scalable psychedelic formulations for transformational human experiences, the Company’s goal is to be the number one trusted, compassionate supplier of safe drug candidates throughout the world. Optimi’s products are grown and manufactured at its two facilities comprising a total of 20,000 square feet in Princeton, British Columbia.




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