Psilocybin, a substance found in hallucinogenic mushrooms, is believed to improve symptoms of severe depression quickly and to a great extent. From here to imagine a marketing?
The , a substance found in , causes rapid and substantial reduction in in the forms of severe depression, evidenced by a new study in . » The magnitude of the effect that we have seen is about four times greater than what have shown for traditional on the market, » said Alan Davis, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the ‘Johns Hopkins University and one of the study’s authors.
The promising effects of psilocybin on symptoms of depression
The results were obtained from 24 patients who had persistent depressive symptoms for about two years before enrolling in the study. Almost three-quarters of the volunteers (71%) observed a reduction of more than 50% in symptoms of depression after four weeks, the study said. 54% were thus considered to be « in » after one month.
Even though this is only a very small-scale study and without a comparison , psilocybin seems to be working as an antidepressant (see our previous article below) . Its potential beneficial effects in psychiatry have been explored for more than 10 years. In 2017, showed that hallucinogenic could « reset » the of patients with depression, by altering connectivity and blood flow. When we see the reluctance triggered by , we suspect, however, that the path to marketing psilocybin will
Psilocybin, a substance found in certain hallucinogenic mushrooms, has shown promising first results in half a dozen patients with treatment-resistant depression.
« This is the first time that psilocybin has been tested in the potential treatment of , » said Dr Robin Carhart-Harris, of Imperial College London, who led this study published in the British journal .
Depression is a major public health problem that affects millions of people around the world and which, at times, is resistant to existing treatments ( drugs and psychotherapy). Research shows that one in five patients do not respond to current treatments, while many who see their condition improve first relapse later.
Researchers began to study , the of certain hallucinogenic mushrooms, in the 1950s. In 2008, American scientists showed that it resulted in lasting effects of psychic well-being and fullness. This led them to believe that the might help some patients with about or depression.
British researchers for their part tested psilocybin on 12 patients with moderate to severe for more than 15 years on average. After a two-day treatment, the patients were followed for three months. According to them, the psychedelic effects were seen between 30 and 60 minutes after taking the , with a peak effect two to three hours after. One week later, all 12 patients showed improvement and eight were in remission. After three months, five were still in remission.
Does psilocybin have any therapeutic effects?
Given the small number of patients tested, the researchers warn that one should not draw « conclusive » conclusions about the therapeutic effects of psilocybin but that research must continue.
Professor David Nutt, who took part in the study, points out that the hallucinogen « targets , like most currently available, but has a very different chemical structure and is more effective. quickly than these ” .
In a commentary attached to the study, Professor Philip Cowen of the University of Oxford admits that the three-month results are « promising but not completely convincing . » Another specialist, Jonathan Flint, professor of neurobiology at the University of Oxford, believes for his part that it is « impossible » to say at this stage that the is effective on .