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MAPS Bulletin Winter 2013: 2013 Annual Report
 
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August 1, 2010

New Ibogaine for Opiate Addiction Outcome Study Ready to Begin

New Ibogaine for Opiate Addiction Outcome Study Ready to Begin

MAPS is embarking on a new study investigating long-term outcomes of ibogaine-assisted therapy for people with opiate addiction. Our previous ibogaine pilot study led by John Harrison, Ph.D. candidate, concluded in December 2009, with sufficient suggestions of efficacy and safety to justify expanding our research to a new, more rigorous protocol. The new study is led by MAPS Deputy Director Valerie Mojeiko, and co-led by University of California, San Diego’s Thomas Kingsley Brown, Ph.D., California Institute of Integral Studies’ (CIIS) faculty member Meg Jordan, Ph.D., R.N., and CIIS graduate student Rishi Karim Gargour, M.A. The study follows patients at Pangea Biomedics, an ibogaine treatment center operated by Clare Wilkins in Playas de Tijuana, Mexico.  CIIS’ Human Research Review Committee is overseeing the safety of the project. The protocol will enroll 20 subjects, but if more funding is obtained an additional 10 subjects will be added. The study will be initiated on August 23, 2010.

The new study investigates the effectiveness of ibogaine-assisted therapy in catalyzing opiate abstinence or reduced opiate use, and improving associated behaviors over 12 months following therapy. We will further investigate the correlation between lifestyle changes and the subjective intensity of the psychedelic ibogaine experience, and observe the severity of withdrawal symptoms associated with opiate detoxification. Subjects denied treatment due to medical problems found during admission (which happens about six times a year) will be asked to enroll in a control group for comparison with the treatment group. We have applied lessons learned from our Mexican pilot study by reducing the number of visits each subject will have with researchers and eliminating some measurements of craving and pain. We are considering adding urine or hair tests to verify if a subject is opiate-free.



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