Psychedelic medicine biotech firm MindMed has announced it has begun a study for a “neutralizer” technology that could shorten and stop the effects of an LSD trip during therapy, paving the way for an “emergency shut-off switch” for psychedelic-assisted therapy.
N,N-Dimethyltryptamine, or DMT, is a hallucinogenic tryptamine drug producing effects similar to those of other psychedelics like LSD, ketamine, psilocybin and psilocin. DMT occurs naturally in many plant species and animals and has been used in religious ceremonies as a traditional spiritual medicine by indigenous people in the Amazonian basin. DMT can also be synthesised in a laboratory.
MindMed has several therapies based on lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) in the phase 2 for treatment of anxiety and cluster headaches, which would be used as an aid during therapy sessions.
Psychedelics are going mainstream. Not only is the US FDA supportive of research, dozens of medical studies are proving such treatments could be helpful, including Johns Hopkins Medicine and New York University. In research to date, psilocybin has been found to help treat mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and PTSD. LSD may be able to help patients with alcohol addiction and other mental disorders. MDMA-assisted therapy could help treat eating disorders, including anorexia and binge eating.
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MindMed is one of those companies. The Toronto-based firm is led by JR Rahn, a former Uber executive whose cocaine addiction led him to try psychedelics as a treatment—an experience he credits with saving his life. Rahn believes drugs like LSD could hold the key to helping the millions of people who have been driven to despair by the pandemic.
LSD may alter consciousness by freeing the brain from its natural barriers, allowing neurons that wouldn't normally interact, to have unusual conversations, brain scans show.
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