Ketamine One Capital Limited, a company focused on consolidating medical clinics and providing mental health treatments, has today announced that it has signed an exclusive agreement for the use of virtual reality (VR) technology in psychedelic treatments with OVR Technology to provide its ‘INHALE Wellness Platform’ over an initial term of two years in Ketamine One’s clinics.
As part of the agreement, OVR Technology will provide its proprietary technology and services for Ketamine One to use with its psychedelic-assisted treatments involving ketamine, psilocybin, DMT and MDMA in order to help improve patient outcomes.
OVR Technology’s INHALE Wellness Platform is an olfactory-enabled VR platform designed to deepen immersion, promote relaxation and help manage stress. The platform is designed to combine the benefits of mindfulness, breathwork and meditation with the next generation of aromatherapy. It includes a head-mounted display, the ‘ION’ device and scent cartridges, as well as several scent-focused nature scenes. The ION is lightweight, wireless and emits scent particles in coordination with VR technology designed to deepen a patient’s immersive experience.
OVR Technology’s ‘Architecture of Scent’ platform brings together software, ‘Scentware’, and hardware via the ION, while also including replaceable cartridges and an Olfactory Experience Engine that allows scent to be triggered during a VR experience. Scents delivered through the ION are water-based and made from a combination of natural and synthetic ingredients that have undergone extensive testing, according to the company. While VR technology is widely known to incorporate sight and sound, this partnership will provide Ketamine One with the capability to generate more realistic immersive VR service offerings via scent at its network of clinics, which the company expects will enhance experiences and help improve patient treatment outcomes.
“We believe that the ION device contains the most accurate on-mask scent technology currently available on the market.” said Dr. Quang Henderson, Chair of Ketamine One’s Clinic Innovation Council. “The ability for our clinicians to alter perceptual experiences with VR and the ION is extremely promising. Optimizing the therapeutic setting is one of the main goals of our VR-based research and development program and being able to utilize the sense of smell to help patients relax, reduce tension and lower stress is expected to result in the development of a comprehensive treatment.”
Adam Deffett, Interim CEO of Ketamine One, added: “Our access to a large patient population and enhanced research capabilities through our wholly-owned contract research organization, KGK Science, along with OVR Technology’s innovative platform, on a combined basis have the potential to lead to clinically validated solutions for use not only in our facilities, but also in patients’ homes, through the development of a portable digital therapeutic offering in the future.”
Ketamine One noted that research has shown that scents elicit emotional and evocative associations and can immediately alter mood.1 Other research shows that, as soon as an odor is registered by the brain, it activates the amygdala-hippocampal complex in the limbic system where emotions, memories, and associations are processed, nearly instantaneously.2
“This is the first VR platform that understands user behavior in the virtual world and responds with real-time sensory stimulation. It has the potential to significantly enhance the wellness capabilities of an already promising technology,” said Aaron Wisniewski, CEO and co-founder of OVR Technology.
Founded in 2017, OVR Technology is one of a very small number of companies developing olfactory- (sense of smell) based solutions for virtual reality, augmented reality and other digital environments. For more information on OVR Technology, please visit the company’s website.
Image credit: OVR Technology / Ketamine One
OVR Technology’s ION device attached to an Oculus Quest headset.