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    Psilocybin research

    Audiogen requested some of the research happening with psilocybin, so I figured I'd post it here for everyone to take a look at.

    There are too many restrictions on the forum re: file size and number of attachments, so I've put a bunch of articles in a google drive folder:

    https://drive.google.com/drive/folde...t4?usp=sharing

    I'll post the abstracts of the studies below, as I can't post that much in a single post apparently. I copied and pasted from PDFs, so the formatting might be a bit off, but I've mostly cleaned it up.
    Last edited by eggsprog; 08-09-2020, 09:03 PM.

    #2
    Brain scans of subjects dosed with psilocybin, according to research published Saturday in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology, reveal that the effect is related to a neurotransmitter called glutamate. In the brain, glutamate acts as a sort of “on switch” in that it helps propagate neural signals traveling across brain cells — and altering how much reaches different areas of the brain, the findings suggest, appear to trigger profound changes in perception.

    Put plainly, the study reveals a bizarre fact about our consciousness: altering one biomolecule in our brains can profoundly alter our subjective ability to perceive ourselves and how we experience the world.

    Even more provocatively, the study found that the activity levels of glutamate in various brain regions are directly linked to a person’s experience on psilocybin — higher glutamate levels in the medial prefrontal cortex were linked to a negative experience of ego dissolution, while lower levels in the hippocampus were linked to a positive one. And it turns out that psilocybin causes both impacts.

    https://futurism.com/neoscope/neuros...reak-down-self

    Click image for larger version  Name:	gettyimages-512153806.jpg?w=845.jpg Views:	0 Size:	509.7 KB ID:	354
    oh, that's interesting. can you control/find out your levels of glutamate?



    Originally posted by J Ruth
    oh, that's interesting. can you control/find out your levels of glutamate

    I am not aware of any supplements like 5-htp for serotonin that supposedly alters levels of glutamate. I would not be surprised if they exist but the fact that it causes different responses in different brain regions seems like it would be very difficult to control by a supplement..


    Originally posted by Audiogen


    I am not aware of any supplements like 5-htp for serotonin that supposedly alters levels of glutamate. I would not be surprised if they exist but the fact that it causes different responses in different brain regions seems like it would be very difficult to control by a supplement..
    Ah, so you might not be able to make it more likely to have a good trip, but it should be able to help predict likelihood of a bad one?
    Originally posted by J Ruth

    Ah, so you might not be able to make it more likely to have a good trip, but it should be able to help predict likelihood of a bad one?
    I'm not sure it all seems like very new research, I just got the impression that observations were made.

    But another reason why this is fascinating is since you and I have been taking psychedelics, Serotonin and respective receptor subtypes have been essentially touted as providing the full breadth of the psychedelic experience and I've been skeptical of that claim for at least the past decade.
    Last edited by Audiogen; 08-11-2020, 03:15 AM.

    Comment


      #3
      Griffiths et al. (2006) - Psilocybin can occasion mystical-type experiences having substantial and sustained personal meaning and spiritual significance
      Rationale Although psilocybin has been used for centuries for religious purposes, little is known scientifically about its
      acute and persisting effects.
      Objectives This double-blind study evaluated the acute and longer-term psychological effects of a high dose of psilocybin
      relative to a comparison compound administered under comfortable, supportive conditions.
      Materials and methods The participants were hallucinogen naïve adults reporting regular participation in religious or spiritual activities. Two or three sessions were conducted at 2-month intervals. Thirty volunteers received orally administered psilocybin (30 mg/70 kg) and methylphenidate hydrochloride (40 mg/70 kg) in counterbalanced order. To obscure the study design, six additional volunteers received methylphenidate in the first two sessions and unblinded psilocybin in a third session. The 8-h sessions were conducted individually. Volunteers were encouraged to close their eyes and direct their attention inward. Study monitors rated volunteers’ behavior during sessions. Volunteers completed questionnaires assessing drug effects and mystical experience immediately after and 2 months after sessions. Community observers rated changes in the volunteer’s attitudes and behavior.
      Results Psilocybin produced a range of acute perceptual changes, subjective experiences, and labile moods including anxiety. Psilocybin also increased measures of mystical experience. At 2 months, the volunteers rated the psilocybin experience as having substantial personal meaning and spiritual significance and attributed to the experience sustained positive changes in attitudes and behavior consistent with changes rated by community observers.
      Conclusions When administered under supportive conditions, psilocybin occasioned experiences similar to spontaneously occurring mystical experiences. The ability to occasion such experiences prospectively will allow rigorous scientific investigations of their causes and consequences.

      Griffiths et al. (2008) - Mystical-type experiences occasioned by psilocybin mediate the attribution of personal meaning and spiritual significance 14 months later
      Psilocybin has been used for centuries for religious purposes; however little is known scientifically about its long-term effects. We previously reported the effects of a double-blind study evaluating the psychological effects of a high psilocybin dose. This report presents the 14-month follow-up and examines the relationship of the follow-up results to data obtained at screening and on drug session days. Participants were 36 hallucinogen-naïve adults reporting regular participation in religious/spiritual activities. Oral psilocybin (30 mg/70kg) was administered on one of two or three sessions, with methylphenidate (40 mg/70kg) administered on the other session(s). During sessions, volunteers were encouraged to close their eyes and direct their attention inward. At the 14-month follow-up, 58% and 67%, respectively, of volunteers rated the psilocybin-occasioned experience as being among the five most personally meaningful and among the five most spiritually significant experiences of their lives; 64% indicated the experience increased well-being or life satisfaction; 58% met criteria for having had a “complete” mystical
      experience. Correlation and regression analyses indicated a central role of the mystical experience assessed on the session day in the high ratings of personal meaning and spiritual significance at follow-up. Of the measures of personality, affect, quality of life, and spirituality assessed across the study, only a scale measuring mystical experience showed a difference from screening. When administered under supportive conditions, psilocybin occasioned experiences similar to spontaneously-occurring mystical experiences that, at 14-month follow-up, were considered by volunteers to be among the most personally meaningful and spiritually significant of their lives.

      Maclean et al. (2011) - Mystical Experiences Occasioned by the Hallucinogen Psilocybin Lead to Increases in the Personality Domain of Openness
      A large body of evidence, including longitudinal analyses of personality change, suggests that core personality traits are predominantly stable after age 30. To our knowledge, no study has demonstrated changes in personality in healthy adults after an experimentally manipulated discrete event. Intriguingly, double-blind controlled studies have shown that the classic hallucinogen psilocybin occasions personally and spiritually significant mystical experiences that predict longterm
      changes in behaviors, attitudes and values. In the present report we assessed the effect of psilocybin on changes in the five broad domains of personality - euroticism, Extroversion,Openness, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness. Consistent with participant claims of hallucinogen-occasioned increases in aesthetic appreciation, imagination, and creativity, we found significant increases in Openness following a high-dose psilocybin session. In participants who had mystical experiences during their psilocybin session, Openness remained significantly higher than baseline more than one year after the session. The findings suggest a specific role for psilocybin and mystical-type experiences in adult personality change.

      Griffiths et al. (2011) - Psilocybin occasioned mystical-type experiences: Immediate and persisting dose-related effects
      Rationale
      —This dose-effect study extends previous observations showing that psilocybin can
      occasion mystical-type experiences having persisting positive effects on attitudes, mood, and
      behavior.
      Objectives—This double-blind study evaluated psilocybin (0, 5, 10, 20, 30 mg/70 kg, p.o.) administered under supportive conditions.
      Methods—Participants were 18 adults (17 hallucinogen-naïve). Five 8-hour sessions were conducted individually for each participant at 1-month intervals. Participants were randomized to receive the four active doses in either ascending or descending order (9 participants each). Placebo was scheduled quasi-randomly. During sessions volunteers used eyeshades and were instructed to direct their attention inward. Volunteers completed questionnaires assessing effects immediately
      after and 1 month after each session, and at 14 months follow-up.
      Results—Psilocybin produced acute perceptual and subjective effects including, at 20 and/or 30 mg/70 kg, extreme anxiety/fear (39% of volunteers) and/or mystical-type experience (72% of volunteers). One month after sessions at the two highest doses, volunteers rated the psilocybin experience as having substantial personal and spiritual significance, and attributed to the experience sustained positive changes in attitudes, mood, and behavior, with the ascending dose sequence showing greater positive effects. At 14 months, ratings were undiminished and were consistent with changes rated by community observers. Both the acute and persisting effects of
      psilocybin were generally a monotonically increasing function of dose, with the lowest dose showing significant effects.
      Conclusions—Under supportive conditions, 20 and 30 mg/70 kg psilocybin occasioned mystical-type experiences having persisting positive effects on attitudes, mood and behavior. Implications for therapeutic trials are discussed.

      Comment


        #4
        Carhart-Harris et al. (2012) - Neural correlates of the psychedelic state as determined by fMRI studies with psilocybin
        Psychedelic drugs have a long history of use in healing ceremonies, but despite renewed interest in their therapeutic potential, we continue to know very little about howthey work in the brain. Here we used psilocybin, a classic psychedelic found in magic mushrooms, and a task-free functional MRI (fMRI) protocol designed to capture the transition from normalwaking consciousness to the psychedelic state. Arterial spin labeling perfusion and blood-oxygen level dependent (BOLD) fMRI were used to map cerebral blood flow and changes in venous oxygenation before and after intravenous infusions of placebo and psilocybin. Fifteen healthy volunteers were scanned with arterial spin labeling and a separate 15 with BOLD. As predicted, profound changes in consciousness were observed after psilocybin, but surprisingly, only decreases in cerebral blood flow and BOLD signal were seen, and these were maximal in hub regions, such as the thalamus and anterior and posterior cingulate cortex (ACC and PCC). Decreased activity in the ACC/medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) was a consistent finding and the magnitude of this
        decrease predicted the intensity of the subjective effects. Based on these results, a seed-based pharmaco-physiological interaction/functional connectivity analysis was performed using a medial prefrontal seed. Psilocybin caused a significant decrease in the positive coupling between the mPFC and PCC. These results strongly
        imply that the subjective effects of psychedelic drugs are caused by decreased activity and connectivity in the brain’s key connector hubs, enabling a state of unconstrained cognition.

        Griffiths et al. (2016) - Psilocybin produces substantial and sustained decreases in depression and anxiety in patients with life-threatening cancer: A randomized double-blind trial
        Cancer patients often develop chronic, clinically significant symptoms of depression and anxiety. Previous studies suggest that psilocybin may decrease depression and anxiety in cancer patients. The effects of psilocybin were studied in 51 cancer patients with life-threatening diagnoses and symptoms of depression and/or anxiety. This randomized, double-blind, cross-over trial investigated the effects of a very low (placebo-like) dose (1 or 3 mg/70 kg) vs. a high dose (22 or 30 mg/70 kg) of psilocybin administered in counterbalanced sequence with 5 weeks between sessions and a 6-month follow-up. Instructions to participants and staff minimized expectancy effects. Participants, staff, and community observers rated participant moods, attitudes, and behaviors throughout the study. High-dose psilocybin produced large decreases in clinician- and self-rated measures of depressed mood and anxiety, along with increases in quality of life, life meaning, and optimism, and decreases in death anxiety. At 6-month follow-up, these changes were sustained, with about 80% of participants continuing to show clinically significant decreases in depressed mood and anxiety. Participants attributed improvements in attitudes about life/self, mood, relationships, and spirituality to the high-dose experience, with >80% endorsing moderately or greater increased well-being/life satisfaction. Community observer ratings showed corresponding changes. Mystical-type psilocybin experience on session day mediated the effect of psilocybin dose on therapeutic outcomes.

        Ross et al. (2016) - Rapid and sustained symptom reduction following psilocybin treatment for anxiety and depression in patients with life-threatening cancer: a randomized controlled trial
        Background
        : Clinically significant anxiety and depression are common in patients with cancer, and are associated with poor psychiatric and medical outcomes. Historical and recent research suggests a role for psilocybin to treat cancer-related anxiety and depression.
        Methods: In this double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial, 29 patients with cancer-related anxiety and depression were randomly assigned and received treatment with single-dose psilocybin (0.3 mg/kg) or niacin, both in conjunction with psychotherapy. The primary outcomes were anxiety and depression assessed between groups prior to the crossover at 7 weeks.
        Results: Prior to the crossover, psilocybin produced immediate, substantial, and sustained improvements in anxiety and depression and led to decreases in cancer-related demoralization and hopelessness, improved spiritual wellbeing, and increased quality of life. At the 6.5-month followup, psilocybin was associated with enduring anxiolytic and anti-depressant effects (approximately 60–80% of participants continued with clinically significant reductions in depression or anxiety), sustained benefits in existential distress and quality of life, as well as improved attitudes towards death. The psilocybin-induced mystical experience mediated the therapeutic effect of psilocybin on anxiety and depression.
        Conclusions: In conjunction with psychotherapy, single moderate-dose psilocybin produced rapid, robust and enduring anxiolytic and anti-depressant effects in patients with cancer-related psychological distress.

        Carhart-Harris et al. (2016) - Psilocybin with psychological support for treatment-resistant depression: an open-label feasibility study
        Background
        Psilocybin is a serotonin receptor agonist that occurs naturally in some mushroom species. Recent studies have assessed the therapeutic potential of psilocybin for various conditions, including end-of-life anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and smoking and alcohol dependence, with promising preliminary results. Here, we aimed to investigate the feasibility, safety, and effi cacy of psilocybin in patients with unipolar treatment-resistant depression.
        Methods In this open-label feasibility trial, 12 patients (six men, six women) with moderate-to-severe, unipolar, treatment-resistant major depression received two oral doses of psilocybin (10 mg and 25 mg, 7 days apart) in a supportive setting. There was no control group. Psychological support was provided before, during, and after each session. The primary outcome measure for feasibility was patient-reported intensity of psilocybin’s eff ects. Patients were monitored for adverse reactions during the dosing sessions and subsequent clinic and remote follow-up. Depressive symptoms were assessed with standard assessments from 1 week to 3 months after treatment, with the 16-item Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptoms (QIDS) serving as the primary effi cacy outcome. This trial is registered with ISRCTN, number ISRCTN14426797.
        Findings Psilocybin’s acute psychedelic eff ects typically became detectable 30–60 min after dosing, peaked 2–3 h after dosing, and subsided to negligible levels at least 6 h after dosing. Mean self-rated intensity (on a 0–1 scale) was 0·51 (SD 0·36) for the low-dose session and 0·75 (SD 0·27) for the high-dose session. Psilocybin was well tolerated by all of the patients, and no serious or unexpected adverse events occurred. The adverse reactions we noted were transient anxiety during drug onset (all patients), transient confusion or thought disorder (nine patients), mild and transient nausea (four patients), and transient headache (four patients). Relative to baseline, depressive symptoms were markedly reduced 1 week (mean QIDS diff erence –11·8, 95% CI –9·15 to –14·35, p=0·002, Hedges’ g=3·1) and 3 months (–9·2, 95% CI –5·69 to –12·71, p=0·003, Hedges’ g=2) after high-dose treatment. Marked and sustained improvements in anxiety and anhedonia were also noted.
        Interpretation This study provides preliminary support for the safety and efficacy of psilocybin for treatment-resistant depression and motivates further trials, with more rigorous designs, to better examine the therapeutic potential of this approach.

        Comment


          #5
          Carhart-Harris et al. (2017) - Psilocybin for treatment-resistant depression: fMRI-measured brain mechanisms
          Psilocybin with psychological support is showing promise as a treatment model in psychiatry but its therapeutic mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, cerebral blood flow (CBF) and blood oxygen-level dependent (BOLD) resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) were measured with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) before and after treatment with psilocybin (serotonin agonist) for treatmentresistant depression (TRD). Quality pre and post treatment fMRI data were collected from 16 of 19 patients. Decreased depressive symptoms were observed in all 19 patients at 1-week post-treatment and 47% met criteria for response at 5 weeks. Whole-brain analyses revealed post-treatment decreases in CBF in the temporal cortex, including the amygdala. Decreased amygdala CBF correlated with reduced depressive symptoms. Focusing on a priori selected circuitry for RSFC analyses, increased RSFC was observed within the default-mode network (DMN) post-treatment. Increased ventromedial prefrontal cortex-bilateral inferior lateral parietal cortex RSFC was predictive of treatment response at 5-weeks, as was decreased parahippocampal-prefrontal cortex RSFC. These data fill an important knowledge gap regarding the post-treatment brain effects of psilocybin, and are the first in depressed patients. The post-treatment brain changes are different to previously observed acute effects of psilocybin and other ‘psychedelics’ yet were related to clinical outcomes. A ‘reset’ therapeutic mechanism is proposed.

          Roseman et al. (2018) - Quality of Acute Psychedelic Experience Predicts Therapeutic Efficacy of Psilocybin for Treatment-Resistant Depression
          Introduction
          : It is a basic principle of the “psychedelic” treatment model that the quality of the acute experience mediates long-term improvements in mental health. In the present paper we sought to test this using data from a clinical trial assessing psilocybin for treatment-resistant depression (TRD). In line with previous reports, we hypothesized that the occurrence and magnitude of Oceanic Boundlessness (OBN) (sharing features with mystical-type experience) and Dread of Ego Dissolution (DED) (similar to anxiety) would predict long-term positive outcomes, whereas sensory perceptual effects would have negligible predictive value.
          Materials and Methods: Twenty patients with treatment resistant depression underwent treatment with psilocybin (two separate sessions: 10 and 25mg psilocybin). The Altered States of Consciousness (ASC) questionnaire was used to assess the quality of experiences in the 25mg psilocybin session. From the ASC, the dimensions OBN and DED were used to measure the mystical-type and challenging experiences, respectively. The Self-Reported Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptoms (QIDS-SR) at 5 weeks served as the endpoint clinical outcome measure, as in later time points some of the subjects had gone on to receive new treatments, thus confounding inferences. In a repeated measure ANOVA, Time was the within-subject factor (independent variable), with QIDS-SR as the within-subject dependent variable in baseline, 1-day, 1-week, 5-weeks. OBN and DED were independent variables. OBN-by-Time and DED-by-Time interactions were the primary outcomes of interest.
          Results: For the interaction of OBN and DED with Time (QIDS-SR as dependent variable), the main effect and the effects at each time point compared to baseline were all significant (p = 0.002 and p = 0.003, respectively, for main effects), confirming our main hypothesis. Furthermore, Pearson’s correlation of OBN with QIDS-SR (5 weeks) was specific compared to perceptual dimensions of the ASC (p < 0.05).
          Discussion: This report further bolsters the view that the quality of the acute psychedelic experience is a key mediator of long-term changes in mental health. Future therapeutic work with psychedelics should recognize the essential importance of quality of experience in determining treatment efficacy and consider ways of enhancing mystical-type experiences and reducing anxiety.

          Carhart-Harris et al. (2018) - Psilocybin with psychological support for treatment-resistant depression: six-month follow-up
          Rationale
          Recent clinical trials are reporting marked improvements in mental health outcomes with psychedelic drug-assisted psychotherapy.
          Objectives Here, we report on safety and efficacy outcomes for up to 6 months in an open-label trial of psilocybin for treatmentresistant depression.
          Methods Twenty patients (six females) with (mostly) severe, unipolar, treatment-resistant major depression received two oral doses of psilocybin (10 and 25 mg, 7 days apart) in a supportive setting. Depressive symptoms were assessed from 1 week to 6 months post-treatment, with the self-rated QIDS-SR16 as the primary outcome measure.
          Results Treatmentwas generallywell tolerated. Relative to baseline, marked reductions in depressive symptoms were observed for the first 5 weeks post-treatment (Cohen’s d = 2.2 at week 1 and 2.3 at week 5, both p < 0.001); nine and four patientsmet the criteria for response and remission at week 5. Results remained positive at 3 and 6 months (Cohen’s d = 1.5 and 1.4, respectively, both p < 0.001). No patients sought conventional antidepressant treatment within 5 weeks of psilocybin. Reductions in depressive symptoms at 5 weeks were predicted by the quality of the acute psychedelic experience.
          Conclusions Although limited conclusions can be drawn about treatment efficacy from open-label trials, tolerability was good, effect sizes large and symptom improvements appeared rapidly after just two psilocybin treatment sessions and remained significant 6 months post-treatment in a treatment resistant cohort. Psilocybin represents a promising paradigm for unresponsive depression that warrants further research in double-blind randomised control trials.
          Last edited by eggsprog; 08-09-2020, 09:02 PM. Reason: Formatting

          Comment


            #6
            Also, if anyone wants a specific study that is mentioned in one if these articles, let me know and I'll try to get it for you.

            Lots are available in some form via Google Scholar, depending on the journal it was published in.

            Comment


              #7
              I moved my other psilocybin research oriented thread to here and just merged the whole thread into one post. I didn't get a prompt on how to order the posts, so apparently it hoisted it below the Op.

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