Colorado Voters Decriminalize Psychedelic Mushrooms

DENVER (AP) — Colorado voters have passed a ballot initiative to decriminalize psychedelic mushrooms for 21 and older people and to create state-regulated “healing centers” where participants can experience the drug under supervision. Colorado becomes the second state, after Oregon, to vote to establish a regulated system for substances like psilocybin and psilocin, the hallucinogens … Read more

Self-Worth Training Boosts Ketamine’s Effects in Severe Depression

A simple computer-based neurocognitive training program that emphasizes self-worth can extend the antidepressant effects of ketamine for up to 30 days in patients with treatment-resistant depression (TRD), new research suggests. The double-blind, randomized clinical trial is the first to assess combining ketamine with a low-cost protective learning program, researchers note. They add that the findings … Read more

Urgent Need for Research Into Psychedelic Tx for Older Adults

Older age is associated with many health conditions that could potentially benefit from psychedelic-assisted therapy, yet very few older adults have been included in clinical trials of psychedelics, new research shows. “Geriatric psychiatrists and others caring for older adults are interested in how much is known about psychedelic use in older adults,” study investigator C. … Read more

Easing the Trauma of Terminal Illness

Something was gnawing at Manish Agrawal, MD. Every day, the oncologist treated patients with standard cancer therapies, but his care could never touch their deepest pains: their despair about death. “In 20 years, I’ve treated close to 100,000 patients,” Agrawal says, “and the one thing I know we don’t do well is dying.” Hospitalist Shoshana … Read more

Psychedelics May Ease Fear of Death and Dying

Psychedelics can produce positive changes in attitudes about death and dying — and may be a way to help ease anxiety and depression toward the end of life, new research suggests. In a retrospective study of more than 3000 participants, near-death experiences occurred naturally or via participants a psychedelic drug had a “remarkably” similar effect … Read more

Expert Views on Psychoactive Drugs at Odds With US Policy

Psychiatrists’ perceptions of the safety, therapeutic value, and abuse potential of psychoactive drugs are inconsistent with current drug policy, results from a new survey show. Adam Levin, MD “The consensus among experts, including psychiatrists, about specific drugs is not consistent or congruent with the schedule of these drugs” in the United States, lead author Adam … Read more

Psychedelic Drug Therapy a Breakthrough for Alcohol Dependence?

Psilocybin paired with psychotherapy is associated with a robust and sustained decrease in drinking among adults with alcohol use disorder (AUD), new research suggests. Results from the first randomized, placebo-controlled trial of psilocybin for alcohol dependence showed that during the 8 months after first treatment dose, participants who received psilocybin had less than half as … Read more

What Ketamine and Psilocybin Can and Cannot Do in Depression

Recent studies with hallucinogens have raised hopes for an effective drug-based therapy to treat chronic depression. At the German Congress of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, Torsten Passie, MD, PhD, professor of psychiatry and psychotherapy at the Hannover Medical School, gave a presentation on the current state of psilocybin and ketamine/esketamine research. Passie, who also is … Read more

University Offers Program to Guide Psychedelic Tx

In September, the University of California, Berkeley, will start training its first class of “trip facilitators,” who will learn how to guide individuals through therapeutic psychological experiences aimed at addressing a variety of mental health problems. The UC Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics (BCSP) training program aims to create a cadre of facilitators … Read more

Ann Shulgin, Pioneer of Psychedelics in Therapy, Dies at 91

Ann Shulgin at her home “The Farm,” in Lafayette, Calif.ornia, in 1979. SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Ann Shulgin, who together with her late husband Alexander Shulgin pioneered the use of psychedelic drugs in psychotherapy and co-wrote two seminal books on the subject, has died at the age of 91. Shulgin had been in ill health … Read more