Daily Archives: July 15, 2014

Ariana Joy’s First Psilocybin Journey: her way to heal from Chronic Lyme Disease

Ariana Joy’s First Psilocybin Journey: her way to heal from Chronic Lyme Disease

That’s when the deep soul lessons began to appear. I could feel my energy being thrown around, from one extreme to the other. I was watching how my life was full of contradictions and what that was doing to my spirit. I wanted to be in a relationship, yet I wanted to travel the world solo. I encouraged people to live lives of freedom, passion, and love, yet I often experienced feelings of depression, insecurity, and loneliness. I advocated love and peace yet was all too quick to judge another. All these contradictions were fragmenting my energy, leaving me feeling disconnected and out of place.

Her trip sounds amazing, and I especially thought it was cool that she had a specific intention going into it.  Also appreciated that she did extensive research on psilocybin so she knew the safe practices involved and kind of what to expect.  Only thing I was concerned about when I read it was that her partner, who was watching over her, was inexperienced as well. But I’m glad that overall, she was able to relax and take as much from the trip as she did.  You go girl.

Read her experience here


Possible legalization for Magic Mushrooms? Dr. Nichols Explains For Us

Possible legalization for Magic Mushrooms? Dr. Nichols Explains For Us

I’ve always longed to be a part of the movement to legalize shrooms for medicinal purposes one day.  And now, the dream is closer than ever! I never realized how close we were in research and how far forward we are in the process of doing so.  This makes me really happy 🙂 Thank you psychedelic society!

Psilocybin, the psychoactive component in magic mushrooms, is proving a prodigious treatment for anxiety, depression, addiction and one study even found it may lead to neurogenesis (the regrowth of brain cells).  Dr. David E. Nichols, one of the co-founders of the Heffter Research Institute, explains the steps it will take for medicinal psilocybin to be legalized.

Psilocybin has been recently tested for many purposes:

  •  Dr. Charles Grob at UCLA Harbor Medical Center: treatment of 12 terminal cancer patients who suffered from anxiety and depression. They were treated with a program of therapy that included psilocybin. Participants showed a significant reduction in anxiety at one and three months after treatment, with no significant adverse events.
  • Dr. Roland Griffiths (Johns Hopkins University) and Dr. Stephen Ross (NYU): two additional studies were begun using psilocybin to treat anxiety and depression in cancer patients
  •  Dr. Michael Bogenschutz at University of New Mexico (UNM): a study of psilocybin-assisted therapy in a pilot study of 10 volunteers with alcohol dependence. Drinking decreased significantly beginning in the second month of treatment, after psilocybin was administered, and improvement remained significant for an additional six months of follow-up. There were strong correlations between the intensity of the experience in the first psilocybin session and clinical improvement following the session.
  • Dr. Matthew Johnson at Johns Hopkins University: a pilot study administering psilocybin within a 15-week smoking cessation treatment. Participants were 15 healthy smokers with a mean of six previous lifetime quit attempts who were smoking an average of 19 cigarettes per day for 31 years. Measures of smoking behavior showed that 12 of the 15 participants (80%) were no longer smoking at six-month follow-up. This smoking cessation rate substantially exceeds rates commonly reported for other types of therapies (typically less than 35%). These findings suggest that psilocybin may be a useful and potentially efficacious adjunct to current smoking cessation treatment approaches, and warrant a follow-up clinical trial. Results also illustrate a framework for research on the efficacy and mechanisms of psychedelic-facilitated addiction treatment.

Currently, we are in Phase 2 of 3 in trying to legalize magic mushrooms, where we have to show statistical significance that it is safe and that it can treat the specified condition (in this case, it is anxiety and depression). However, Phase 3 is going to be a hard one and may take awhile to complete the studies.

There is no drug company or government support for these studies.

For the full article, click here


Hey! Do You Want to get Involved in Psychedelic Research?


I found this on the AMA Rick Doblin reddit page, and it’s very useful for those who want to get more involved in research or want to know more about it.  These are valuable contacts I will probably be hitting up soon…

As someone who has spent these past two weeks writing PhD applications, it’s been difficult to find programs that advertise their involvement in psychedelic research. […] Do you know of any programs that are doing particularly interesting work? […]

  •  Visiting PubMed is a big first step; you can see who is doing interesting work just from reading recent publications.

  •  For psilocybin; Roland Griffiths at Johns Hopkins University continues to do studies of psilocybin. Matthew Johnson, also of Johns Hopkins University, has investigated the effects of salvia divinorum; not sure if he is continuing with that or not.

  •  Psilocybin research is also taking place at New York University, though they have not yet published findings.

  • Robin Carhart-Harris is conducting research at Imperial College, London on psilocybin. Carhart-Harris and D. Nutt have been involved in MDMA research, also with HV Curran. It is uncertain if this continues.

  •  Franz Vollenweider may be doing research with psilocybin at the University of Zurich (in Zurich, Switzerland).

  •  Harriet de Wit at the University of Chicago is doing MDMA research (it appears that this continues to do so.)

  •  Gillinder Bedi at Columbia University is conducting studies of MDMA (also cannabis / THC).

  •  Matthias Liechti and colleagues (often publishing under Hysek as first author) are conducting extensive studies of MDMA at the Unversity of Basel.

  •  Kim Kuypers, Johannes Ramaekers and colleagues are conducting MDMA research at Maastricht University in the Netherlands.

  •  Michael Mithoefer is collaborating with Mark George and Colleen Hamlon at MUSC

Note that because funding is tight and fluctuates, all such programs are subject to change. You want to look for a department with neuroscience and a medical school, but the best way to track programs of research is to search PubMed or the internet using the substances or questions of interest to you.

 CIIS is starting a Certificate Program in Psychedelic Therapy, too!

 -Ilsa Jerome, Ph.D., Research and Information Specialist