Success for growing research program

illustration of dr jones and student working in a lab
Research produces hope for new treatments

Success for growing
research program

One of Miami University’s most promising research projects will help develop a new and exciting class of molecules to treat mental health challenges such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, and substance dependency.

The psilocybin technology developed at Miami University was invented by a team of students in the lab of Andrew Jones, assistant professor in Miami’s department of chemical, paper, and biomedical engineering. They discovered a way to sustainably produce a promising drug candidate that would help patients with treatment-resistant depression. The team collaborated with Matthew McMurray, assistant professor of psychology at Miami, whose research intersects pharmacology and developmental and cognitive neuroscience.

As the project advanced, Miami and PsyBio Therapeutics Inc. agreed to a research sponsorship to further develop a platform technology that enables the biosynthesis of psilocybin and other psychoactive molecules that occur naturally in certain plants and fungi. Miami granted PsyBio a global exclusive license to the technology generated from such research.

dr andrew jones working in the lab
Dr. Andrew Jones working in the lab

Latest high-profile success story

It’s the latest high-profile success story for Miami’s growing research program that goes year-round, ranging from high-tech discoveries in laboratories to groundbreaking insights in the humanities.

“Our collaboration with PsyBio Therapeutics will enable us to not only speed up the development of new bioactive compounds in the lab, but also facilitate the realization of our ultimate goal – the commercial development of a pharmaceutical product that can help those struggling with mental health disorders,” said Jones, who also serves as the chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board at PsyBio.

About research at Miami University:

  • In 2019-2020: $24 million in sponsored research
  • Nearly 3,000 undergraduates participated in sponsored research
  • Miami restructured the Office of Research and Innovation to incentivize research among faculty and students.