The main focus of the workshop will be discussion of the therapeutic method used for MAPS-sponsored research based on the Treatment Manual on which all MAPS MDMA/PTSD studies are now based. The method will be illustrated with clinical vignettes from research sessions. As an introduction we will include a brief overview of the history of MDMA and the phases of MDMA research, a brief review of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), of the physiological and psychological effects of MDMA and of the rationale for studying MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD as well as a summary of the results of the first completed clinical trial of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD.
Michael Mithoefer, MD is a psychiatrist who practices in Charleston, SC where he divides his time between clinical research and outpatient clinical practice specializing in treating posttraumatic stress disorder with an emphasis on experiential methods of psychotherapy. He is clinical assistant professor of psychiatry at the Medical University of South Carolina and is a Grof certified Holotropic Breathwork Facilitator, a Certified Internal Family Systems Therapist and is trained in EMDR. He and his wife, Annie Mithoefer, completed a MAPS- sponsored Phase II clinical trial testing MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). They are currently conducting a second trial with military veterans, firefighters and police officers who have PTSD unresponsive to previous treatment. They conduct training for therapists in other MAPS sponsored studies, and he is medical monitor for MAPS-sponsored clinical trials in Europe, the Middle East, Canada and elsewhere in the US. Before going into psychiatry in 1995 he practiced emergency medicine for ten years and is currently board certified in Psychiatry, Emergency Medicine and Internal Medicine.
Annie Mithoefer, BSN, is a psychiatric nurse, Grof certified Holotropic Breathwork Practitioner and is trained in Hakomi Therapy. She and her husband, Michael Mithoefer divide their time between Clinical Research with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and work with individual psychotherapy clients in their private practice. They are co-therapists for MAPS-sponsored clinical trials including a completed Phase II study testing MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and an ongoing study with military veterans, firefighters and police officers who have PTSD unresponsive to previous treatment. They also conduct training programs for other MAPS-sponsored research teams.
The Times of India highlights the completion of LSD-assisted psychotherapy research conducted in Switzerland by MAPS Principal Investigator Dr. Peter Gasser. The results from the study were published in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease and indicate that subjects given a full dose of LSD experienced significant reductions in anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. “All of them said after 12 months of taking the drug that it was worth taking part in the trial and they would come again if asked,” explains Gasser. “They also said they would recommend it for other people in the same position as themselves.”
Gawker writes about the first controlled study of the therapeutic use of LSD in over 40 years, highlighting results indicating that study participants diagnosed with advanced-stage illness had a statistically significant reduction in anxiety after receiving a 200 microgram dose of LSD in conjunction with psychotherapy. The article notes that the participants who received the full dose of LSD noted a 20% improvement in anxiety that was maintained at the one-year follow-up.
AlterNet provides an overview of newly completed research into the medical potential of LSD-assisted psychotherapy. The results, published in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, indicate that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can be safely administered and can help reduce anxiety associated with treat advanced-stage illness. The article covers the history of this LSD research, describes the study protocol, and shares quotes from researchers and a study participant.
Digital Journal writes about the monumental reemergence of research into the therapeutic potential of LSD after a 40 year hiatus. The article interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about the broad implications of the results from new research into LSD-assisted psychotherapy to treat anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. “The stigma against psychedelic research is finally lifting, and we’re getting concrete results showing that psychedelics can be safely and effectively used in the context of therapy,” Burge explains. “Like any drug, LSD has risks as well as benefits, and we’re finding the safest and most beneficial ways to use it.”
The Independent reports that new research into the therapeutic potential of LSD has has produced results indicating that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can reduce anxiety associated with advanced stage illness. “The study was a success in the sense that we did not have any noteworthy adverse effects,” explains Principal Investigator Peter Gasser, who conducted the research in Switzerland. “All participants reported a personal benefit from the treatment, and the effects were stable over time.”
The Huffington Post reports that recently published research into the effectiveness of LSD-assisted psychotherapy is the first study of the therapeutic use of LSD in over 40 years. MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin is interviewed about the results of the study and the role of LSD in science and politics. “The political suppression of this research is over,” pronounces Doblin. “I don’t think the genie is going to be put back in the bottle.”
The Intellectual Gentlemen’s Club interviews ethnobotanist Dennis McKenna and Brad Burge of MAPS about the current state of scientific research into the potential medical benefits of LSD, MDMA, psilocybin, and ayahuasca.
News AM highlights results from new research into LSD-assisted psychotherapy to treat anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. The article details the protocol for the LSD study and shares affirming experiences reported by study participants. “After about two months of weekly therapy, the eight participants who received full doses of LSD improved,” notes the article.
The Fix highlights the publication of LSD research results in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, noting that scientists have found that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can help reduce anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin explains how this research can change public perception of psychedelics, stating, “We want to break these substances out of the mold of the counterculture and bring them back to the lab as part of a psychedelic renaissance.”
Discover Magazine covers the historic publication of results from the first study of the therapeutic use of LSD in more than four decades. Researchers note that subjects receiving a full dose of LSD during psychotherapy experienced statistically significant reductions in anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. “My LSD experience brought back some lost emotions and ability to trust, lots of psychological insights, and a timeless moment when the universe didn’t seem like a trap, but like a revelation of utter beauty,” said one study participant.
The Los Angeles Times highlights this week’s published results from the first therapeutic study of LSD in more than four decades, showing that can be safely administered in a controlled setting and can help reduce anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. The study was conducted over a span of 4 years in Switzerland by MAPS Principal Investigator Dr. Peter Gasser, and the results were published in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. The article shares specific details from the study, analyzes results, and covers the history of LSD’s original role in therapy and science.
The Verge provides an overview of new research into the medical potential of LSD-assisted psychotherapy to treat anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. The article highlights the results of the study, noting, “A year after the sessions ceased, the patients who had received a full dose of LSD — 200 micrograms — experienced a 20 percent improvement in their anxiety levels.”
International Business Times reports that scientists have published promising new results from research into LSD-assisted psychotherapy, noting that the treatment can be safely administered in a controlled, therapeutic context. The results from the study indicate that talk therapy combined with LSD can help reduce anxiety associated with advanced stage to a significant degree.
New York Daily News reports that results published in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease indicate that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can help reduce anxiety in subjects diagnosed with advanced-stage illness. The study notes the positive outcome of the study, explaining, “Those who received full dosages of LSD reported their feelings of anxiety dropped by about 20%.”
PolicyMic details how researchers have completed the first study of the therapeutic use of LSD in over 40 years, noting that LSD can be safely administered in a controlled clinical context. The article notes that the new research into LSD-assisted psychotherapy produced results indicating that anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness can be reduced after receiving two sessions of talk therapy combined with LSD.
Live Science showcases how scientists are researching the therapeutic potential psychedelic substances including LSD, MDMA, and psilocybin and finding promising results. The article highlights the recent publication of results from research into LSD-assisted psychotherapy to treat advanced-stage illness and notes that research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy is also producing inspiring results.
The Dish writes about how scientists are exploring the concept of psychedelic medicine, noting that researchers have recently completed studies into LSD-assisted psychotherapy to treat anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness and studies into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy to treat posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Now This News creates a video overview of the history of LSD research, noting that results from new research into LSD-assisted psychotherapy indicate that the treatment method can help reduce anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness.
CTV News looks into the revival of research into the therapeutic potential of LSD, highlighting how new study results indicate that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can help reduce anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. “This study is historic and marks a rebirth of investigation into LSD-assisted psychotherapy,” notes MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin. “The positive results and evidence of safety clearly show why additional, larger studies are needed.”
Motherboard remarks on the significance of reemerging scientific research into the therapeutic potential of psychedelics, showcasing results from the MAPS-sponsored study of LSD-assisted psychotherapy to treat anxiety associated with advanced stage illness. In a paper published in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, the study author’s explain the promising results and make a call for expanded research, stating, “Further study is warranted into the potential of LSD-assisted psychotherapy.”
Medical Daily details the history of research into the medical potential of LSD and highlights the completion and results of the MAPS-sponsored study of LSD-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for advanced-stage illness. The article notes the progression of interest in psychedelic therapy, stating, “Psychiatrists in the U.S. and abroad are starting to see that the drug may be worth revisiting — the patients certainly think so.”
Reason.tv gives an investigative report on research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, through original interviews with MAPS Clinical Investigator Michael Mithoefer, M.D., MAPS Founder Rick Doblin, Ph.D., and a veteran who shares his view on how MDMA-assisted psychotherapy can help people suffering from PTSD.
TIME covers the publication of study results in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease indicating that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can help reduce anxiety associated with life-threatening disease. The MAPS-sponsored study was conducted in Switzerland by Dr. Peter Gasser and found that anxiety levels improved by 20% in volunteers who received a full dose of LSD.
Waking Times analyzes the recent renaissance of research into the potential medical benefits of psychedelics, highlighting how the publication of results from new research into LSD-assisted psychotherapy to treat anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness is helping reduce the stigma surrounding psychedelics. Buck Rogers of Waking Times notes, “Legitimate and positive scientific research is the key that can unlock long-held cultural taboos and misunderstandings about the nature of psychoactive substances.”
The Raw Story shares results from a double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study of LSD-assisted psychotherapy to treat anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. Dr. Peter Gasser conducted the study in Switzerland and worked with 12 participants. Gasser explains the results that he observed and measured in study participants receiving the full dose of LSD as an adjunct to psychotherapy, noting, “Their anxiety went down and stayed down.”
Forbes reports on today’s publication of the results from the first therapeutic study of LSD in over 40 years in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. The Swiss study was led by Principal Investigator Peter Gasser, M.D. and monitored the anxiety levels of volunteers diagnosed with life-threatening diseases before and after receiving LSD-assisted psychotherapy. The article summarizes the study protocol and results, noting that the treatment was safely administered and resulted in statistically significant reductions in anxiety among participants. “These results indicate that when administered safely in a methodologically rigorous medically supervised psychotherapeutic setting, LSD can reduce anxiety,” explains Gasser.
The New York Times announces today’s publication of the results from MAPS’ completed Swiss study of LSD-assisted psychotherapy for anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. The study, published online in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, is the first study of the therapeutic use of LSD in humans in over 40 years. The double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study in 12 subjects found statistically significant reductions in anxiety following two LSD-assisted psychotherapy sessions. The results also indicate that LSD-assisted psychotherapy can be safely administered in these subjects, and justify further research. “It’s a proof of concept,” MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin explains. “It shows that this kind of trial can be done safely, and that it’s very much worth doing.”
On March 4, 2014, the results of the first study of the therapeutic use of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) in humans in over 40 years were published online in the peer-reviewed Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. Sponsored by the non-profit Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), the double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study in 12 subjects with advanced-stage illness found statistically significant reductions in anxiety following two LSD-assisted psychotherapy sessions.
Fred Gardner of O’Shaughnessy’s refutes comments about medical marijuana made by National Institute of Health Director Francis Collins in a recent USA Today article. The article notes that Collins lacks a fundamental understanding of what research has been completed. “Sad to see such willful ignorance,” laments MAPS Founder Rick Doblin. “As for the lack of research, it’s now been 4 months and 1 week that the Public Health Service reviewers have been sitting on MAPS’ marijuana/PTSD protocol.”
April Short of AlterNet gives a full overview of how MAPS’ FDA-approved protocol for medical marijuana research is facing obstructions from governmental agencies. “We’re hoping with this pressure, with enough public attention, HHS will make a statement or Obama—especially given his recent statements on medical marijuana—will decide to eliminate the hold, and to eliminate the process,” says Brad Burge of MAPS. “Something tells me this news about actual research being obstructed may come as a surprise to many.”
Waking Times examines how MAPS’ FDA and IRB-approved protocol for research into marijuana for treating PTSD in veterans is being blocked by the U.S. Public Health Service. “The fact that the government would prevent research of a natural medicine for the cure of PTSD speaks volumes about our government’s overall lack of interest in a genuine commitment to the mental health and wellness of our soldiers after returning from combat zones,” explains article author Alex Pietrowski.
Mint Press News sheds light on how political obstacles are blocking medical marijuana research. The article notes that the FDA and Institutional Review Board-approved protocol for this research has been put on hold for over four months by the U.S. Public Health Service review process, delaying the advancement of scientific knowledge about marijuana and PTSD. “This groundbreaking research could assist doctors in how to recommend treatment for PTSD patients who have been unresponsive to traditional therapies,” explains MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin.
High Times reviews how MAPS’ FDA-approved study of medical marijuana for symptoms of PTSD in veterans is being blocked by the U.S. Public Health Service. The article notes that over 14 weeks have passed since the protocol was resubmitted to the PHS for approval, showing that this unnecessary review process hinders the advancement of science and medicine. “If the PHS review requirement was removed,” says MAPS-sponsored researcher Dr. Sue Sisley, “we would gather information that could help veterans today. The stifling of medical research on marijuana stands in the way of our vets returning to a normal life.“
A Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and University of Arizona Institutional Review Board (IRB)-approved protocol for a study of marijuana for symptoms of PTSD in U.S. veterans, sponsored by the non-profit Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), has been on hold for over 3½ months, as researchers wait for the PHS to respond to their request to purchase marijuana for the study.
The Nexian explains how MAPS’ FDA-approved study of marijuana for treating symptoms of PTSD cannot begin due to obstacles put in place by the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). The article highlights MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin’s recent letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services explaining how research can only move forward if the PHS protocol review process ends and/or the NIDA monopoly on marijuana ends.
Author James Oroc writes for Reality Sandwich about how psychedelic research education positively influences the cultural perception of psychedelics. Oroc defines some of the elements contributing to these changes. “We can witness psychedelic research slowly but surely re-entering the universities and research labs,” he writes, “thanks to: the vision and persistence of Rick Doblin and MAPS.”
AlterNet reports that Oaksterdam University has launched a new scholarship fund to provide veterans with an extensive education about the science, politics, history, and careers surrounding medical marijuana. The article makes it clear that MAPS’ proposed research into the effects of medical marijuana to treat symptoms of PTSD in veterans is continuing to face governmental obstacles, noting that over three months have passed since the study protocol has been resubmitted for review without receiving a response from the government.
The Intellectual Gentlemen’s Club interviews U.S. Army veteran Tim Amoroso about his experience serving in the military, returning home with PTSD, and how his non-clinical experiences with psychedelics changed his relationship with PTSD. Amoroso and the show’s hosts discuss the risks and benefits of psychedelic experiences, share their perspectives on the history of psychedelic research, and offer their hopes for future legal uses of psychedelics.
The Stream explores the current status of research into the therapeutic potential of psychedelics. MAPS Founder Rick Doblin shares promising results from completed psychedelic research and Rachel Hope speaks about how being a study participant in MAPS’ study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy helped her overcome treatment-resistant PTSD.
WND comments on current drug use in America, examining how prescription drugs, alcohol, and other substances influence public health. While examining the future of medicine, the article highlights MAPS’ research into the medical potential of psychedelics and marijuana as treatments for a variety of conditions.
Medical Daily responds to Scientific American’s recent article about obstacles surrounding psychedelic research. The article explores the history of research into the therapeutic potential of psychedelics, noting that LSD and MDMA were originally used in medicine before being placed in Schedule I. Susan Scutti of Medical Daily writes about why the research should continue, wondering whether “[p]erhaps the world would be a better place.”
Forbes investigates the laws and politics surrounding marijuana, noting how medical marijuana research is being blocked by federal agencies. The article highlights President Obama’s recent comments about the safety of marijuana, and MAPS Founder Rick Doblin explains that receiving further research approval is necessary for marijuana to become reclassified. “Assuming that marijuana has been approved as a prescription medicine by the FDA,” Doblin says, “Schedule II seems too high, since Marinol is in Schedule III. Due to its actual abuse potential, marijuana for medical use should be in Schedule V.”
Psychedelic Press UK interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about Manifesting Minds, the newly released anthology of articles from the MAPS Bulletin. Burge speaks about the wide variety of topics about psychedelics found in special editions of the MAPS Bulletin and offers insight into the future of research into the medical potential of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. “Though our primary focus is scientific research,” he explains, “Educating the public is also an essential part of our mission and the MAPS Bulletin has been a way to do that.”
Reality Sandwich features an excerpt about ayahuasca research from Manifesting Minds, the newly released MAPS Bulletin anthology. The article gives an extensive overview of research into ayahuasca-assisted therapy as a potential treatment for PTSD and points to studies investigating the use of ayahuasca as a treatment for drug addiction.
The Daily Beast reports on new research into psilocybin and LSD as treatments for cluster headaches, featuring interviews with researchers Dr. John Halpern and Bob Wold of ClusterBusters. Halpern speaks about 2-Bromo-LSD, a non-psychoactive version of LSD, which could also help relieve cluster headaches. To illustrate the need for more effective treatment options, the article cites statistics published by Bob Wold in the MAPS Bulletin, noting that the suicide rate is 20 times higher than average for people suffering from cluster headaches.
Good Times Weekly shares how journalist Rak Razam first experienced ayahuasca in Peru while creating a report about shamanism, which led him to write a book and direct a documentary, both of which are titled Aya: Awakenings. The article highlights the upcoming MAPS-sponsored film screening and Q&A featuring Rak Razam and members of the MAPS Staff on February 8 in Santa Cruz, CA.
Psychology Today explores how research into the effects of psychedelics has changed between the 1960s and today, highlighting how scientists have become more rigorous with their studies. “The field itself has kind of moved from an excited adolescence to a calmer young adulthood,” explains Brad Burge of MAPS. “We have new methodologies that are really helping out, we control our clinical studies carefully with double blinds and really make sure to be as scientific as possible without that kind of explosive enthusiasm that earlier researchers had.”
Psychedelic Press UK reviews Manifesting Minds, the MAPS Bulletin anthology that features over thirty contributions from experts about the role of psychedelics in science, medicine, culture, and spirituality. The article highlights the history and purpose of the MAPS Bulletin, shares excerpts from various portions of the book, and explains why psychedelic research is important for the advancement of scientific knowledge.
Pacific Standard looks at the overdose-related death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, and points to research into the therapeutic use of ibogaine as a possible way to help people suffering from severe drug addiction. The article shares information about MAPS-sponsored ibogaine research taking place in New Zealand and Mexico and interviews MAPS Founder Rick Doblin. “It has unique potential for helping people go through opiate withdrawal,” Doblin says.
Medill Reports of Northwestern University joins the conversation about MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD, highlighting the need for a more effective treatment for the 5.2 million Americans affected by PTSD each year. MAPS Clinical Investigator Dr. Michael Mithoefer is interviewed about the public response to research, the ineffectiveness of current PTSD treatments, and the fading stigma surrounding psychedelics. Mithoefer explains the importance of continuing research into the potential medical benefits of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, stating, “We don’t want to deprive patients of potentially life-saving treatment.”
Motherboard highlights how and why MAPS began accepting bitcoin (BTC) donations in response to growing demand, how MAPS raised over $21,000 in bitcoins in less than two months, and why the bitcoin community is embracing charitable donations for scientific research on psychedelics and marijuana. Brian Brown explains, “As the Internet gave psychedelics a voice, bitcoins gave the Internet a wallet.”
Psychotherapy Networker shares progress from research into treating posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. The article covers the history of recent studies, details the therapeutic process, and reports on how therapist teams are being trained to conduct research in international locations including Israel, Canada, and Colorado. “One traumatized woman described herself as feeling lost in the underbrush,” recounts Clinical investigator Dr. Michael Mithoefer. “‘I didn’t know where I needed to go,’ she admitted. After some MDMA sessions, she said, ‘Now I have a map.’”
Jed Diamond, Ph.D., writes for the Good Men Project about promising new treatments for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), including Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. Diamond also recommends Manifesting Minds, the new MAPS Bulletin anthology.
Jeffery Pritchett interviews Brad Burge of MAPS for Examiner.com about the wide range of content on the role of psychedelics in science, medicine, and culture in Manifesting Minds, the new anthology of articles from the tri-annual MAPS Bulletin. The article highlights the variety of contributors to Manifesting Minds, how psychedelics have helped as medical treatments for many people, and how psychedelics can creatively inspire the creation of technological inventions and creative insights.
Steve Chapman of The Chicago Tribune‘s editorial board publishes an op-ed calling on President Obama to end the obstructive Public Health Service review process for medical marijuana research, especially considering Obama’s recent critical statements about the war on drugs.
The Libertarian writes about the medical potential of ibogaine. The article covers its history, religious use, legality, and risks, and highlights MAPS’ ongoing research in New Zealand and Mexico into ibogaine’s potential in addiction treatment. Dr. Anwar Jeewa talks about the importance of a controlled setting for ibogaine experiences, explaining that ibogaine “has to be taken in the right setting and treatment has to be followed up with psychosocial care.”
Mint Press News shares the results of a new academic study analyzing the connection between psychedelic drug use and reduced criminal behavior. According to the researchers, the results suggest that psychedelics “may promote alcohol and other drug abstinence and prosocial behavior in a population with high rates of recidivism.” Brad Burge of MAPS also gives commentary on the political history of drugs. “The legal status of drugs has historically had no relationship to scientific evidence about their risks,” he points out. “MAPS and other organizations in the psychedelic science field are changing that.”
Scientific American makes the case for additional public support for research into the therapeutic potential of psychedelics and marijuana to treat severe mental illnesses and other medical conditions. The article explores the history of research into the potential medical benefits of LSD, MDMA, psilocybin, and marijuana, highlighting how these substances hold promise for treating people suffering PTSD, cluster headaches, obsessive compulsive disorder, and other conditions.
Oped News reviews Manifesting Minds, the new MAPS Bulletin anthology featuring experts discussing the role of psychedelics in science, medicine, spirituality, and other areas. The review notes how psychedelic science is exploring the use of MDMA and other psychedelics for serious medical conditions including PTSD, to facilitate mystical and spiritual experiences, and improve the lives of healthy individuals.
Time 4 Hemp interviews combat veteran Sean Azzariti, the first person to legally purchase recreational marijuana in Colorado. Azzariti describes how marijuana is a “life changer” for managing PTSD symptoms, and why it’s important to create conversations about the widespread issue of PTSD in veterans and others. Azzariti mentions the importance of MAPS’ work, stating, “It’s amazing to see the progress that we’re making with posttraumatic stress disorder outside of the normal pharmaceutical realm that we’re used to getting shoved down our throats.”
International Business Times reports on the completion of a new study by researchers at Imperial College London on the effect of MDMA in the brains of 25 healthy human volunteers. The results from the study, which was featured on UK Channel 4’s “Drugs Live” show last year, show that MDMA reduces blood flow in areas of the brain associated with processing emotions and memories. “The findings suggest possible clinical uses of MDMA in treating anxiety and PTSD,” says researcher Professor David Nutt. “But we need to be careful about drawing too many conclusions from a study in healthy volunteers. We would have to do studies in patients to see if we find the same effects.”
Medline Plus highlights a new study from Imperial College London on the effects of MDMA on the human brain. The study used fMRI brain scans to monitor how MDMA affected the brains of 25 healthy human volunteers as they processed positive and negative memories. The results show how MDMA changes the way the brain processes emotions, and add to the evidence for MDMA’s promise as a treatment for anxiety and PTSD.
Imperial College London announces the results of their completed study of how MDMA works in the human brain. The study was led by Professors David Nutt and Val Curran, and portions of the study were previously televised on UK Channel 4’s “Drugs Live” program. The results show that volunteers were able to more easily process negative memories and had reduced blood flow in areas of the brain associated with memory and emotion. “In healthy volunteers, MDMA seems to lessen the impact of painful memories,” reports researcher Robin Carhart-Harris, PhD. “This fits with the idea that it could help patients with PTSD revisit their traumatic experiences in psychotherapy without being overwhelmed by negative emotions.”
Motherboard highlights how sites including Bluelight and Opiophile support online harm reduction. Bluelight co-owner Sebastian’s Ghost talks about the history of Bluelight.org and how scientists use online information to gather information about drugs and drug use. Brad Burge of MAPS also speaks about the MAPS Forums on Bluelight and how services like Bluelight help create open dialogues about drugs.
Psychedelic Frontier announces that MAPS has completed the first new therapeutic study of LSD-assisted psychotherapy in over 40 years. The study focused on treating people with end-of-life anxiety and the results have been accepted for publication the peer-reviewed Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. The article shares quotes about the success of the research from study coordinator Dr. Peter Gasser and MAPS Founder Rick Doblin. In a public letter about the study, Gasser states, “We can show that LSD treatment can be safe when it is done in a carefully controlled clinical setting.”
Santa Cruz Weekly reports on current research into ibogaine-assisted therapy to treat opiate addiction. Ibogaine researcher Thomas Brown, Ph.D., and Brad Burge of MAPS are interviewed, sharing observations from the studies, information about how ibogaine works, and other addictions that may benefit from this research. Brown speaks about the success of this research, stating, “The ibogaine treatment gave people the sense that they could overcome the addiction.”
Entheo Radio interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about the release of Manifesting Minds: A Review of Psychedelics in Science, Medicine, Sex, and Spirituality, the success of MAPS’ Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign to complete MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research, the current status surrounding clinical research proposals into the medical benefits of marijuana, and utilizing the internet to reach new supporters of psychedelic research.
Leaf Science announces that the first person to legally purchase recreational marijuana in Colorado was Sean Azzariti, a war veteran suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Azzariti explains how marijuana helps him manage the symptoms of PTSD, stating, “Cannabis saved me when PTSD was just overwhelming me.”
Medscape explores the resurgence of research into the therapeutic potential of psychedelics including LSD, psilocybin, and MDMA. Through a series of interviews, prominent researchers explain how these substances may help people suffering from psychiatric disorders including posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), addiction, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and depression.
Dr. Sue Sisley sets the record straight about an AZ Central editorial repeating a misleading statement about the National Institute on Drug Abuse refusal to support medical marijuana research aiming to develop the whole marijuana plant into a prescription medicine. Dr. Sisley explains that NIDA has consistently prevented research, pointing to three separate FDA-approved studies to which NIDA has refused to sell marijuana.
AlterNet shares the story of war veteran Perry Parks and his work to help veterans receive access to medical marijuana to help them cope with symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The article details Parks’ mission to provide an effective solution to treating symptoms of PTSD, and explains the science behind the effects of marijuana on people with PTSD. Brad Burge of MAPS also explains the obstacles facing clinical research into the potential medical benefits of marijuana.
Midwest Real interviews U.S. Army veteran Tim Amoroso about his experience returning home to the U.S. with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Amoroso details what it was like suffering from PTSD and explains his frustration with the current treatment methods offered by the Veterans Administration. He also recounts his experience of self-administering MDMA in a non-clinical setting and passionately expresses how his life has changed in great ways since.
Medscape hosts a slideshow presentation about the resurgence of research into the potential medical benefits of psychedelic substances. Written by Professor David J. Nutt, MD, and Bret S. Stetka, MD, this educational resource touches upon the history of psychedelics, details about the medical potential of MDMA, LSD, psilocybin, and ibogaine.
Stoney Roads features a portion of the reddit Ask Me Anything session hosted by MAPS, looking at the timeline of research into treating posttraumatic stress disorder with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. In response to a question about making this treatment more widely available, Amy Emerson of MAPS explains, “At least two Phase 3 studies are typically required to prove safety and efficacy before permission for prescription use can be approved.”
Less Than Three extracts information about MDMA research from the reddit Ask Me Anything session hosted by MAPS. The article highlights that MDMA-assisted psychotherapy may become a prescription treatment option for people suffering from PTSD in 2021 after more studies are completed.
Crust Nation writes about the possibility of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy becoming a prescription treatment for PTSD by the year 2021. The article provides an in-depth overview of how MDMA-assisted psychotherapy affects people suffering from PTSD.
Could MDMA effectively treat—maybe even cure—post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD)? Dr. Richard Rockefeller says yes—or at least a very strong maybe. He says studies involving a small number of people with moderate to severe treatment-resistant PTSD found most subjects were improved after three treatments with medical-quality ecstasy. He’s cautiously optimistic about the prospect of psychedelic medicine, which he believes could heal the trauma in millions from Darfur to the former Yugoslavia. FDA-approved trials of therapy with ecstasy began in 2004, and Dr. Rockefeller believes the U.S. government will eventually approve using the drug for serious medical treatment if research on larger numbers bears out these early findings. What are the possible downsides to this research and what safeguards should be in place to govern it? Is this too good to be true? Join a conversation about the frontiers of brain science and potential for soothing the human condition.
Richard Rockefeller, M.D., Former Board Member, Rockefeller University; Former Chair, U.S. Advisory Board, Doctors Without Borders
In conversation with Larry Brilliant, M.D., MPH, President, Skoll Global Threats Fund; Co-founder, Seva Foundation
The University of Southern California’s Religion Dispatches covers the Ask Me Anything session hosted by MAPS Founder Rick Doblin and MAPS staff, focusing on the topic of spirituality. Responding to a question about the spiritual and therapeutic uses of LSD and ayahuasca, Doblin responded, “Spiritual experiences can occur in a hospital setting as well as in a shamanistic ritual.”
The Dish asks MAPS Founder Rick Doblin the second in a series of reader-submitted questions about psychedelics. Doblin speaks about the unconscious mind as the guide for psychedelic experiences and emphasizes the importance of having someone nearby to provide a sense of safety.
Pulse Radio shares the reddit Ask Me Anything session hosted by MAPS, highlighting the status of research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD and how it could be a legal treatment by 2021.
Fact Mag calls the recent reddit Ask Me Anything session hosted by MAPS “some of the most sober drug talk we’ve seen all year.” The brief article highlights researchers’ projections that MDMA-assisted psychotherapy could become a prescription treatment option for people diagnosed with PTSD by 2021.
YourEDM explores MDMA-assisted psychotherapy becoming a prescription treatment for people suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder. The article details the timeline for current and future research into this treatment that must happen in order to make the therapy legally available.
Mixmag highlights the Ask Me Anything session hosted on reddit by MAPS Founder Rick Doblin and the staff of MAPS. The topics of the article include the safety of marijuana, the myth of LSD “flashbacks,” and how MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research is helping people with PTSD.
Dr. Sue Sisley responds to an earlier AZ Central editorial echoing a misleading statement about the National Institute on Drug Abuse’s stance on medical marijuana research. Dr. Sisley points out NIDA’s refusal to provide research-approved marijuana to three separate FDA-approved studies, clarifying that NIDA continues to block research intended to develop the whole marijuana plant into a medicine.
The Dish asks MAPS Founder Rick Doblin a reader-submitted question about the biggest myth surrounding psychedelic drugs. Clarifying a misconception about the validity of psychedelic experiences, he explains: “They are human experiences that we access through psychedelics, rather than psychedelic experiences that are somehow a foreign implant that are not actually real.”
AlterNet highlights 10 of the best questions and answers from the AMA (Ask Me Anything) hosted by MAPS Founder Rick Doblin and MAPS staff on reddit. MAPS staff answered more than 75 out of over 2,000 questions asked by the reddit community. “This is one of the most exciting and inspiring parts of what we do,” says Brad Burge of MAPS. “Interacting with people who are actively trying to broaden their perspective about the risks and therapeutic benefits of psychedelics and marijuana.“
Psychedelic Frontier collates the questions and answers from the AMA (Ask Me Anything) session hosted by MAPS Founder Rick Doblin and the staff of MAPS. The collection of answers touch upon research into the scientific and medical potential for psychedelics and marijuana; how these substances can produce therapeutic, spiritual, and enlightening experiences; and the future of psychedelics and marijuana.
The Being Bipolar Podcast interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about psychedelics and their role as tools for treating mental health issues. The discussion also addresses how MAPS is using the internet to maximize educational outreach and how psychedelics and marijuana are being seen more and more as healing tools.
On December 3, 2013, MAPS Founder Rick Doblin and the staff of MAPS participated in an AMA (Ask Me Anything) session hosted on reddit. The public interview remained on the home page of reddit throughout the entire day, generating over 2,000 questions and more than 75 answers about the scientific and medical potential of psychedelics and marijuana.
Healthline explores the medical potential of several currently illegal drugs, including psilocybin, ketamine, and MDMA. Psychiatrist Michael Mithoefer, M.D., talks about MDMA as an adjunct to psychotherapy. He explains, “MDMA seems to give people a period of time in which they connect with their emotions but are not overwhelmed by them, a sense that ‘this is difficult, but I can do it.’”
Reality Sandwich publishes an excerpt from Manifesting Minds, the upcoming anthology of articles from the MAPS Bulletin, in which Daniel Pinchbeck reflects on the relationship between psychedelics and ecology. “In the same way that we garden plants, teacher plants like ayahuasca seem to garden us when we ingest them. During shamanic sessions, people often get direct messages about how to transform their lives.”
WNPR interviews Brad Burge of MAPS along with University of Connecticut Professor C. Michael White, Dr. John Halpern of Harvard, Sam Tracy of Students for Sensible Drug Policy, and EDM producer Tommie Sunshine in a special segment focusing on the risks, benefits, popular uses, and public health implications of MDMA.
City Pages explores the world of the psychedelic brew ayahuasca, addressing its use for healing people in ceremonial contexts and in scientific research. The article highlights the potential of ayahuasca as a treatment for addiction, depression, and end-of-life anxiety, and shares interviews with Dennis McKenna, Gabor Mate, Brian Rush, and MAPS Founder Rick Doblin. Speaking about the need for more research into the potential medical benefits of ayahuasca, Brian Rush states, “This is a potential approach that a lot of people have some confidence in, and at least enough confidence to say, ‘We need more studies. We need to know more.’”
Entheo Radio interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about the excitement surrounding the launch of MAPS’ Indiegogo fundraising campaign to fund MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for veterans with PTSD, the expansion of global interest in ayahuasca, how media portrayal of psychedelics can improve, and the upcoming January 7 release of Manifesting Minds, an all-new anthology of articles from the MAPS Bulletin.
Huffington Post Live interviews MAPS Founder Rick Doblin, Amy Rising, Ricardo Andre Pereyda, and Dr. Raphael Mechoulam about marijuana for treating posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in veterans. Doblin details the current status of research initiatives focused on turning marijuana into a medicine, speaks about the increase in public support for medical marijuana, and explains the differences in treating PTSD symptoms with medical marijuana compared to MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, which aims at more lasting changes.
SBS interviews Rachel Hope about how her life changed after participating in MAPS’ clinical trial of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating PTSD. Martin Williams, founder of Psychedelic Research in Science & Medicine (PRISM), talks about his hopes to bring similar research to Australia, stating, “We are only interested in working with pure MDMA, the effects of which in participants are well categorised and the safety profile is well established.” Rachel Hope describes the impact and effectiveness of this treatment, saying, “My life is incredible,” she says. “I was grateful to just get a little relief but I’m cured of PTSD.”
Santa Cruz, Calif.—The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), a non-profit research and educational organization based in Santa Cruz, Calif., is hosting a free event at the Pacific Cultural Center on Friday, November 22nd at 7:00 PM. Smoke Signals and Acid Dreams: An Evening with Martin Lee, is an evening lecture and open discussion focusing on the latest research on the potential benefits, as well as the risks, of medical marijuana and psychedelic psychotherapy.
Reason sheds light on the resurgence of scientific research into psilocybin mushrooms by interviewing psychedelic researchers Robin Carhart-Harris of Imperial College London and Roland Griffiths of Johns Hopkins University at Psychedelic Science 2013. They speak about the effects of psilocybin on the brain, their research results, and what the implications of this research may be.
We are now in the midst of a psychedelic research renaissance, with clinical studies under way at top medical schools and research institutes worldwide. How might psychedelics redefine medicine and science, and how can we effectively reintegrate them into contemporary society? What new directions will the future hold? And what are some post-prohibition models for regulation that are already being envisioned and implemented?
Featuring Gabby Agin-Liebes, Jag Davies, Rick Doblin, Albert Garcia, Ingmar Gorman, Joshua Wickerham
This interdisciplinary panel and discussion will focus on how psychedelic-assisted therapy, medical marijuana, and occupational therapy are helping some veterans for whom conventional treatments are not working. What does a federally approved clinical marijuana study look like for PTSD? What does an MDMA-assisted therapy study protocol look like? How does marijuana help de-escalate PTSD triggers? And what is going on in Congress to address this issue at the federal level?
Featuring Shawn Majors, Alexander Neumeister, Marcela Ot’alora, Bill Piper, Steph Sherer, and Sue Sisley
Ayahuasca, ibogaine and psilocybin are helping people face death, cope with trauma, and overcome addiction to alcohol, tobacco, opiates and other drugs. What can we learn from the growing body of scientific research? Can these drugs revolutionize addiction treatment? And how can we enhance the benefits and reduce the harms of psychedelic drug use outside of treatment settings?
Featuring Albert Garcia, John Harrison, Stefanie Jones, Philippe Lucas, Linnae Ponté, and Andrew Tatarsky
Public discourse around both marijuana and psychedelic drugs has shifted rapidly over the last decade, especially the past few years. Is that where the similarities end? In what ways have marijuana and psychedelics each been re-branded? To what extent can we draw lessons from recent marijuana reform victories when it comes to other drugs? And what are the opportunities and pitfalls for changing hearts and minds about marijuana and psychedelic policies moving forward?
Featuring Tom Angell, Brad Burge, Jag Davies, Aaron Houston, Jason Salzman, and Anna Szostek
Drug research is highly politicized. The National Institute on Drug Abuse, which funds 85% of addiction research worldwide, has been accused of using its influence to advance its political agenda. How do politics influence what and who gets studied, the measures used to evaluate drug effects, and the conclusions that are drawn? What are the fundamental biases inherent in the current research environment? How do political, financial and institutional constraints create gaps in our knowledge and shape core myths that have become taken-for-granted “truths” about drugs and people who use drugs? And what can researchers do to overcome some of these problems?
Featuring Shaquita Borden, Rick Doblin, Robert Grantfield, Carl Hart, Sheigla Murphy, Lynn Paltrow, and Sue Sisley
OracleTalk interviews Giancarlo Canavesio about Neurons to Nirvana, his newest documentary about how scientists are studying the medical benefits of various psychedelics and getting exciting results. While speaking about charitable and personal activities, Canavesio talks about why he supports MAPS and reflects on the vision of MAPS Founder Rick Doblin.
UPI shares a major update about research into MDMA-assisted therapy for social anxiety in autistic adults, announcing that the Research Advisory Panel of California and the Institutional Review Board at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center/Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute has approved the new MAPS-sponsored study. The study will be led by Charles Grob, M.D., and Alicia Danforth, Ph.D.
The Raw Story announces MAPS’ new study into MDMA-assisted therapy for social anxiety in autistic adults that recently received approval from the Research Advisory Panel of California and the Institutional Review Board at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center/Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute. Researchers will study the therapeutic effects of MDMA-assisted therapy in 12 autistic adults, once the study has final approval from the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Opposing Views covers the Research Advisory Panel of California and the Institutional Review Board at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center/Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute’s approval of MAPS’ new research into MDMA-assisted therapy for social anxiety in adults on the autism spectrum. The study received approval from the Food and Drug Administration in April and is awaiting approval from the Drug Enforcement Agency in addition to further funding.
Shalom Life interviews MAPS Clinical Research Associate Mimi Peleg about her role in helping scientific research into the medical benefits of MDMA and marijuana take place in Israel. Peleg speaks about the high rate of PTSD among Israelis, the effectiveness of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating PTSD, and the future of medical marijuana.
The Los Angeles Times explores the rise in popularity of the drug known as Molly in New York and other areas, interviewing recreational users about their experiences with the drug. The article explains that Molly is often mixed with other substances and is usually not pure MDMA. MAPS Founder Rick Doblin reflects on the Molly trend in popular music culture. “In this digital age, people want human emotion, they want to celebrate communally,” Doblin said. “People are hungry for this type of experience.”
Huffington Post Live host Ricky Camilleri interviews MAPS Founder and Executive Director Rick Doblin and VICE Science Editor Hamilton Morris about the current state of research chemicals, how MDMA-assisted psychotherapy can help people suffering from PTSD, and how factual information about drugs is one of the best ways to promote harm reduction.
Katie Couric invites MDMA expert Dr. Julie Holland and former FBI agent Brad Garrett to clarify information about the emerging drug Molly, focusing on how it is not a pure version of MDMA while explaining the risks associated with taking an unknown substance from the streets. Holland explains the therapeutic value of MDMA, noting, “In its pure form, with a doctor supervising, you can give it to somebody. There’s a study with posttraumatic stress disorder where they’re giving MDMA to veterans.” Holland adds, “In that setting, it’s fairly safe, and there may even be some benefit.”
The Subjective Perspective Show interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about the legitimization of psychedelic research, why he supports medical marijuana, and how MDMA-assisted psychotherapy can help people overcome treatment-resistant posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
CMC Forum interviews psychedelic researcher James Fadiman, Ph.D., about exciting results from his career studying psychedelics. They investigate the promising results from research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating PTSD, and the creative insights that psychedelic research could provide for scientists and doctors to advance their fields of study.
Tablet Magazine checks in on psychedelic research in Israel, sharing an inspiring testimonial from a 70-year-old Israeli named Josef, who suffered from PTSD for decades until participating in our ongoing Israeli study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. The article also profiles MAPS Founder Rick Doblin, detailing his career aspirations, his family life, creating MAPS, and why Israel was selected as a location for MDMA research.
The Raw Story showcases Transforming Medicine, the new mini-documentary about psychedelic science. The article quotes Gabor Mate, MD, who shares his stance on how to efficiently engage others in discussions about the medical benefits of psychedelics, and reminds viewers to discover over 80 videos of educational content presented at Psychedelic Science 2013, now available at psychedelicscience.org.
Jewish Journal investigates the history of medical marijuana in Israel. The article highlights Israel’s large legal medical marijuana farm, how the drug has helped Israeli Defense Forces veterans treat their PTSD, and how medical marijuana fits into Israel’s health care system. Dr. Alan Shackelford summarizes the importance of this research, noting, “We have an obligation as a medical community to study cannabis so that we can understand how it works, and more effectively decide what cannabinoids are most effective for what, and at what dose.”
The Psychiatric Times speaks with Andrew Penn, Associate Clinical Professor at the University of California, San Francisco about his presentation at the US Psychiatric and Mental Health Congress regarding the therapeutic potential of MDMA, marijuana, and ketamine. Penn highlights the promising results of MAPS’ first completed study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating PTSD, details the variety of conditions that can be treated by medical marijuana, and urges clinicians to provide harm reduction advice to patients to promote safe drug use.
Wired gives an overview of psychedelic researcher Timothy Leary’s archive of written papers, research, and experiences. The article points to the prominent of researchers and doctors that presented completed study results at Psychedelic Science 2013, and interviews MAPS Founder Rick Doblin about his studies of Leary’s early work and legacy. “Doblin says it’s not fair to blame the decades-long lull in psychedelic research entirely on Leary,” writes Greg Miller of Wired. “‘He deserves some condemnation, but he also made a fundamental contribution to the scientific study of psychedelics,’ Doblin said.”
Midwest Real engages Brad Burge of MAPS in a discussion about the path to legitimizing psychedelics, how the media sensationalizes negative stories about drugs, and about how psychedelic harm reduction and clinical research are changing public perceptions around psychedelics.
Researcher and advocate Mimi Peleg reports for Tikkun on psychedelic and medical marijuana research in Israel, sharing successes she’s witnessed, personal anecdotes about her work studying new treatments for PTSD using marijuana and MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, and how this research can shape the future. Peleg notes the prevalence of PTSD in Israeli citizens, highlights the progress and process of MAPS’ study into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in Israel, and looks forward to a new study of treating PTSD with medical marijuana. Peleg emphasizes, “Cannabis and MDMA education and research in Israel suffers from a severe lack of funds and this is where any one of us anywhere can be of tremendous help.”
The Atlantic inspects the relationship between electronic dance music (EDM) concerts and the recreational use of MDMA, diving into the origins, culture, and rise in popularity of EDM culture. MAPS Founder and Executive Director Rick Doblin shares insights about the spiritual aspect of MDMA use, the impurity of street drugs claiming to be MDMA, and his thoughts about why the electronic music scene embraces MDMA.
The Arizona Daily Wildcat takes a glimpse at the harsh political landscape for medical marijuana research in Arizona. MAPS-sponsored researcher Dr. Sue Sisley speaks about the government obstacles surrounding our FDA-approved study of medical marijuana for 50 combat veterans suffering from PTSD. Dr. Sisley explains, “[Federal regulators] decided that, in their heads, marijuana has no medical benefit. That’s why they put it as a Schedule I drug. People in law enforcement – the DEA – for some reason they’re allowed to make a decision about the medical properties of this plant. The DEA should have no business defining what class drugs are placed in.”
AlterNet dives deeply into Israel’s successful medical marijuana program, which effectively provides Israeli citizens with effective medicines while allowing scientists to conduct research into the medical benefits of the drug. MAPS Clinical Research Associate Mimi Peleg speaks with Alternet about the history of medical marijuana in Israel, how she prepares patients for treatment, and how Israel’s stance on medical marijuana is an example of how countries like the United States can move forward with medical marijuana.
News21 takes an intimate look at the lives of veterans suffering from PTSD who are finding that alternative treatment methods including yoga and medical marijuana are more helpful for them than standard medications. In the report, MAPS-sponsored researcher Dr. Sue Sisley talks about about the growing need and continued resistance to medical marijuana research for veterans. Sisley notes, “Anytime you dare to ask the government to allow you to do a study on the efficacy of marijuana, it’s going to get blocked. Science should never be shackled by politics.”
ABC News explores how the decriminalization of drugs in Portugal allows events like Boom Festival to provide services like KosmiCare, a dedicated space for harm reduction. By working closely with medical staff and police, KosmiCare helps festival attendees feel more comfortable in a potentially overwhelming environment. MAPS Founder Rick Doblin explains, “It creates a whole climate of comfort at an event.” He continues, “I think that there’s a general sense the U.S. has been on a punitive, counterproductive approach, and people around the world are exploring different options.”
The Washington Times explores the clinical potential of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating PTSD while reporting on the safety of a tainted version of MDMA known as “Molly.” The article details how the government’s classification of MDMA is preventing additional research into its potential positive and negative effects.
Mint Press News sheds light on the resurgence of psychedelic research, educating their readers about the role of psychedelics in neuroscience, medicine, and psychology. The article details research into MDMA-assisted therapy as a treatment for social anxiety in adults on the autism spectrum and lists a number of research papers signifying additional medical benefits stemming from psychedelic research.
Australian radio program 2ser discusses the possibility that Australia could be the next country to welcome research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating PTSD. The show’s hosts explore the chances of bringing MDMA research to Australia, especially as a way to help heal many veterans suffering from treatment-resistant PTSD.
TIME.com dispels some common myths about “Molly” in the wake of several recent deaths from the tainted drug. The article highlights that MDMA is being researched for its potential to be used as a therapeutic-adjunct for treating PTSD and distinguishes between the scientific and recreational uses of MDMA. Author Maia Szalavitz explains, “Short-term, highly monitored use in treatment can’t compare to taking an illegal drug of uncertain purity in a chaotic environment among strangers.”
CNN presents the concept of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD in an effort to distinguish the difference between the safety of clinical research that uses MDMA compared to recreational use of “Molly,” a tainted version of MDMA.
The Australian Broadcasting Corporation looks into a potential opening for new research in Australia into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. The article features anecdotes from Steve McDonald of Psychedelic Research in Science & Medicine (PRISM), Rick Doblin of MAPS, and Tony Macie, a study participant from MAPS’ U.S. research. Macie is interviewed about his experience receiving MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD, remarking “If anything, immediately after I did it, I wished it would be allowed for a lot of veterans with PTSD. I think it could make beyond a huge impact.”
The Conversation makes a passionate call for Australia to embrace psychedelic research as a way to help heal citizens suffering from psychological illnesses, noting that current Australian research can only examine the potential harm of psychedelics. The article highlights results from MAPS’ international psychedelic research program as a motivational tool to inspire Australians to study the medical potential of psychedelics.
Good Times Weekly focuses on the mission of the Zendo Project, MAPS’ psychedelic harm reduction service offering compassionate care for people undergoing difficult psychedelic experiences at festivals around the world. Zendo Project Harm Reduction Coordinator Linnae Ponté speaks about the importance of this work, explaining, “When someone is having a difficult experience [with psychedelics], what they need more than anything is to feel safe and secure so that they can surrender to the experience, and that involves someone who is ready to compassionately listen to them or just hold space for them.”
Healthline explores a new study finding no connection between psychedelic substance use and mental health problems. The article highlights MAPS’ presence in Black Rock City 2013, detailing how the Zendo Project psychedelic harm reduction services help people who feel overwhelmed while undergoing a difficult psychedelic experience.
New Scientist publishes a detailed report of a participant’s experience in MAPS’ study of ibogaine-assisted therapy as a treatment for addiction. MAPS Founder Rick Doblin elaborates on the purpose of ibogaine research, explaining, “There have been claims by the government that there’s a high potential for abuse and no medical use, and claims from ibogaine advocates that one dose is a miracle cure. We’re trying to gather some scientific evidence to better evaluate it.”
The Libertarian reports on how scientists are conducting research into the potential medical benefits of psilocybin-assisted therapy as a treatment for end-of-life anxiety, depression, smoking addiction, and OCD.
Popular Science highlights a new study that measures the link between use of psychedelic substances and mental health issues. Researchers conducting the population study found that a total of 22,000 out of 130,000 randomly selected adults in the United States had experience with psychedelics. The study results indicate that people who use psychedelics are less likely to have serious psychological distress or mental health problems.
ScienceDaily reports on a newly published population study of adults in the United States that indicates use of psychedelics is not linked to the development of mental health issues. Researchers discovered that use of psychedelics correlated with having less psychological distress and fewer psychiatric medicine prescriptions. “Over the past 50 years tens of millions of people have used psychedelics and there just is not much evidence of long-term problems,” explains researcher Teri Krebs.
Researchers in Norway publish results from a population study measuring the relationship between use of psychedelics and mental health problems. After examining data from 130,000 adults in the United States, researcher Teri Krebs and clinical psychologist Pål-Ørjan Johansen discover that lifetime use of psychedelics is not associated with the development of mental health issues. People who have used mescaline, LSD, psilocybin, or peyote are reported to have lower rates of psychological health problems.
The Warrior Poet Project Podcast invites MAPS Founder Rick Doblin and psychedelic researcher Charles Grob to engage in a discussion about the role of psychedelics in medicine, the increase of interest and scientific studies focusing on ayahuasca, and how cultural acceptance of psychedelics is rising.
The Libertarian dedicates an article to the science and politics of research into the therapeutic use of LSD. The article focuses on a variety of medical conditions that could benefit from LSD research, including anxiety, alcoholism, and cluster headaches.
Popular Science reports on Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s call for more research into marijuana’s medical benefits. Brad Burge of MAPS explains, “Dr. Gupta’s gutsy admission will show regulators that even after decades of denial, it’s never too late to change their tune.”
Alternet showcases the Zendo Project psychedelic harm reduction services, with detailed reports and insight from Linnae Ponté and Brad Burge of MAPS. The article goes into Linnae’s initial interest in harm reduction, how the Zendo Project is helping people around the world, and what the future holds.
The Las Vegas Guardian Express dissects how CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta went from being vocally against medical marijuana to becoming a passionate advocate of the medical benefits of marijuana.
CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta apologizes for his role in providing misleading and inaccurate information about marijuana to the public. He provides a sweeping overview of marijuana research in an effort to educate the public, focusing on the conditions that can potentially benefit from medical marijuana and how research into providing further evidence of its efficacy is being blocked by governmental agencies. He explains, “It doesn’t have a high potential for abuse, and there are very legitimate medical applications. In fact, sometimes marijuana is the only thing that works.”
The Libertarian highlights international research conducted by MAPS into the potential benefits of treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. The article details promising research results and invites MAPS Founder Rick Doblin to speak about the efficacy of the treatment. Doblin explains, “When they’re remembering [a traumatic experience] under MDMA it gets reconsolidated without the fear being as strong as it was before.”
Quantum Life Studios interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about the extensiveness of Psychedelic Science 2013, the concept of using psychedelics as tools, and how psychedelic research is changing the landscape of medicine and science. Burge explains “By doing the science, in a sense, we are performing psychedelic therapy on the culture at large just by directing our attention to these things in a positive, safe way.”
Refinery29 investigates the recent popularity of the street drug known as “Molly,” which is often sold as pure MDMA despite frequently containing harmful contaminants. Public intrigue in Molly has recently been building, and Brad Burge of MAPS proposes one reason for the spike in interest. “People are looking for ways to connect, Burge said. “In certain doses, in certain places, certain drugs can produce this feeling of intimacy.”
Anna Szostek reviews the Psychedelic Science 2013 Women’s Visionary Congress workshop and reflects on how sharing personal stories about psychedelic experiences with peers can be an invaluable tool for personal healing and cultural change.
People suffering from substance use disorders may experience significant benefits from ayahuasca-assisted therapy, according to a recently completed observational study published in the June 2013 edition of Current Drug Abuse Reviews. The first-of-its-kind study reported significant improvements in measures of mental and behavioral health related to substance use disorders, as well as significant reductions in harmful cocaine use following treatment. MAPS was a co-sponsor of this study.
The Economist explores how the criminalization of MDMA and other drugs is spurring the creation of new substances. The article makes a case that recent drug-related fatalities could be have been prevented if public health-oriented policies were implemented.
The Being Bipolar podcast interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about the Zendo Project psychedelic harm reduction services, touching on the history of harm reduction, why it’s important, and his thoughts on the success of the fundraising campaign for the Zendo Project on Indiegogo .
IVN reports on a study indicating that prescription drug overdoses are the largest cause of sudden deaths in the United States. The article highlights MAPS’ promising research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD as an example of how the legal classification of a substance does not necessarily reflect its relative harm or medical utility.
London Real interviews MAPS Founder Rick Doblin about the history of MAPS, the promising results of the latest research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, and the concept of using psychedelics as tools.
AlterNet republishes Ido Hartogsohn’s article, “The American Trip: Set, Setting, and Psychedelics in 20th Century Psychology”, originally appearing in the Spring 2013 Special Edition of the MAPS Bulletin. The article compares the differing viewpoints of the scientists who studied psychedelic substances in the 1950s and 1960s, noting that some found inspiring results about the future of consciousness while others came to believe substances like LSD could cause symptoms of mental illnesses.
Cannabis Now magazine dives deep into the varied politics of medical marijuana around the world, showing the disparity between individual state laws in the U.S. while explaining why research approval requirements are less strict in Israel than the U.S. The article prominently features MAPS staff, including Founder Rick Doblin and Clinical Research Associate Mimi Peleg.
Motherboard explores the concept and effects of “micro-dosing” with psychedelic substances such as LSD. Psychedelic researcher and author James Fadiman is profiled and quoted in the article, adding further insight into this under-explored area of research.
The Hemp Connoisseur interviews David Bronner, President of Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps, about the use of hemp seeds in soaps, his support for psychedelic research, and how he includes MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin among his mentors and key inspirations for his work.
Rick Doblin and Joe Rogan talk about the politics of psychedelic research, human rights, the future of psychedelic therapy, and the importance of awe-inspiring moments on The Joe Rogan Experience podcast.
While speaking to the Australian parliament on behalf of the public, Senator Di Natale asks, “What is Australia doing to address the current unscientific classification of various drugs and the resulting unnecessary harm and expense this is causing?” The question was posed by Steve McDonald of PRISM: Psychedelic Research in Science & Medicine and was the most popular question during a public vote organized by OurSay. PRISM is helping MAPS work to start Australian research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy.
The South China Morning Post explores the growing field of research looking into psychedelics as part of innovative treatments for serious medical conditions. The article details psychedelic research efforts by Professor David Nutt of Imperial College in London and highlights additional studies from MAPS.
The Fix looks into the future of research into using psychedelic substances as potential treatment methods for addiction. The article highlights a large variety of psychedelic studies that are producing promising results for the future of treating addiction, as well as other conditions.
The Arizona Capitol Times gives Dr. Sue Sisley an op-ed to speak about the barriers preventing MAPS-sponsored medical marijuana research in Arizona. Sisley explains that medical professionals from a variety of specialties are in favor of the FDA-approved study, but heavy resistance is coming from NIDA and the DEA, putting her study on “indefinite hold” until something changes.
The New York Times shares the history of research into MDMA as an adjunct to therapy while exploring how “Molly” has become more prominent in popular culture. “As we move more and more electronic, people are extremely hungry for the opposite: human interaction on a deeper level where you’re not rushing around,” explains MAPS Founder and Executive Director Rick Doblin. He adds, “The rise of Molly is in tune with how people are feeling emotionally.”
Motherboard speaks directly with the producers of the upcoming documentary, Neurons to Nirvana: Understanding Psychedelic Medicines, a new film about research into the potential medical benefits of psychedelic substances. The conversation ranges from conditions that may benefit from psychedelics to further details about the film.
Time explains how potential treatments for Alzheimer’s, cancer, depression, and more are facing obstacles preventing scientific research. ““People have not even realized how much research and how many possible new treatments have been blocked by drug laws,” says Professor David Nutt, author of a newly published paper about drug laws and how they affect science and medicine.”
The Intellectual Gentlemen’s Club interviews Brad Burge of MAPS about innovative medical treatments developed from psychedelic research, the obstacles surrounding medical marijuana research, and MAPS’ mission.
Felix Online writes about a new paper published by David Nichols, Leslie King, and Professor David Nutt about how scientific research into the medical benefits of psychedelic substances could contribute to the advancement of medicine and science if government obstacles were not present. The article covers a variety of studies into the medical and therapeutic potential of psychedelics.
New Republic reports on scientists facing government obstacles preventing clinical research into the medical benefits of marijuana. The article goes into the history of how MAPS Founder Rick Doblin and Donald Abrams worked together to start medical marijuana research in California, and how they have been working closely together to attempt to obtain marijuana from the National Institute of Drug Abuse.
The Daily Chronic reports on the decision of lawmakers in Maine to allow PTSD to be accepted as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana. The article provides testimonials from people who have used medical marijuana for PTSD with success, in addition to mentioning how our FDA-approved medical marijuana research for treating PTSD is facing obstacles.
Monday Magazine delves into the concept of using ayahuasca as a treatment for addiction. The article explains the techniques of ayahuasca therapy and speaks with researchers Dr. Gabor Maté and Philippe Lucas about promising recently published research results.
The Independent educates the public about a new paper that explains how innovative treatments for PTSD and depression have been delayed by 30 years as a result of government interference with psychedelic research. Professor David Nutt describes the obstacles as “the worst case of scientific censorship since the Catholic Church banned the works of Copernicus and Galileo.”
Professor David Nutt writes for The Conversation about his thoughts regarding government bans on Schedule I drugs and how medical research is limited as a result. His opinions are explained in a recent paper with David Nichols and Leslie King about how science and medicine would benefit from less interference with psychedelic research.
Smithsonian Magazine’s blog looks at the potential medical benefits of using psilocybin mushrooms, including how the substance may provide benefits to people suffering from depression and anxiety when administered to volunteers in a clinical setting. The abundance of research into psilocybin and other psychedelics presented at Psychedelic Science 2013 is highlighted, revealing an optimistic perspective on the future of psychedelic studies.
Policymic comments on the current state of MDMA research, going into detail about how soldiers and veterans with treatment-resistant PTSD may eventually benefit from research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. The article points out that public perception of MDMA is beginning to shift from thinking of it as a party drug to thinking of it as a way to efficiently help heal people with serious trauma.
BBC News explores research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), highlighting quotes from researchers, professors, and a veteran who participated in an ongoing study.
The Arizona Daily Wildcat sheds lights on recent legislative changes surrounding the potential for conducting medical marijuana research at universities in Arizona. A research initiative looking into using medical marijuana to alleviate PTSD symptoms in 50 veterans is unable to begin due to obstacles put in force by various government agencies. Dr. Sue Sisley explains, “To put up barricades for research, like saying that it can’t be done at the university is really unhelpful to the progress of science.”
Scientific American examines research into psychedelics including LSD and psilocybin as therapeutic adjuncts for helping people alleviate anxiety associated with advanced-stage illnesses, reviewing current and past research conducted by major psychedelic research organizations.
The Chronicle of Higher Education provides a comprehensive review of Psychedelic Science 2013, featuring a summary of the event, a profile on researcher Charles Grob, and informative thoughts about the current and past state of psychedelic research. Download the PDF.
The Fix speaks with MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin about how adults from the “baby-boomer” generation are becoming more accepting of marijuana due to changing legal and cultural landscapes. Doblin explains his opinion of the changes, musing “What’s so ironic to me is how many people grew up hiding marijuana from their parents, and now they’re hiding marijuana from their kids.”
Scientific American explores the rise in use of marijuana in the United States, providing an overview of how medicine, laws, culture, and more is changing as a result of an increase in public acceptance.
Clint Werner, author of Marijuana: Gateway to Health, responds to claims about marijuana made in a recent Scientific American article authored by Roxanne Khamsi. Werner details inaccuracies and unfounded claims by providing factual information with referenced sources.
io9 dives deep into the history of MDMA in therapeutic contexts, focusing on the explosion of research into new treatment methods for PTSD, depression, anxiety, and social anxiety for autistic adults using MDMA as part of therapy.
Motherboard explores our new study into using MDMA-assisted therapy as a way to reduce social anxiety in adults on the autism spectrum. The study protocol was approved by the FDA on April 30, 2013, and the study will enroll a total of 12 participants. Study co-investigator Alicia Danforth provides important information about her doctoral dissertation on the use of MDMA by autistic adults that helped lay the groundwork for the new MAPS-sponsored clinical study.
Alternet publishes a transcript of addiction expert Gabor Maté‘s presentation at Psychedelic Science 2013, in which Dr. Maté speaks eloquently about research into the healing potential of ayahuasca and whether it can provide benefits to people suffering from addiction or cancer.
Renowned author and researcher James Fadiman, Ph.D. joins the To The Best of Our Knowledge radio show for an interview about psychedelics and their potential for enhancing creativity. Fadiman explains, “These substances are no longer seen as terrifying; they’re being seen as very powerful, like your automobile.”
Author Don Lattin explores the recent resurgence in psychedelic research that is currently happening around the world. Lattin details how research into psychedelic substances is increasing public perception of psychedelics due to the development of innovative treatment methods for a variety of serious medical conditions.
Note: This article first appeared in Spirituality & Health magazine under the title “The Second Coming of Psychedelics.”
Alternet shares excerpts about the therapeutic potential of MDMA from researcher Ralph Metzner’s book, Through the Gateway of the Heart; Accounts of Experiences with MDMA and Other Emphathonic Substances. The article explores the potential benefits of using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD, details the possible beneficial effects of the drug on people with anxiety, and highlights an ex-nun’s experience with MDMA treatment.
The Raw Story reports on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s decision to approve MAPS’ new study that will explore the safety and therapeutic potential of MDMA-assisted therapy as a treatment for social anxiety adults on the autism spectrum. The study will take place at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center/Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute.
East Bay Express discusses research presented at Psychedelic Science 2013 by Yale associate professor Andrew Sewell indicating that medical marijuana may provide benefits to people undergoing PTSD treatment. Sewell’s study focuses primarily on a PTSD treatment method known as exposure therapy, and his research shows that adding marijuana treatments can expedite the process by increasing extinction learning.
The official journal of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy explores how current psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy research is providing innovative treatment methods for assisting people suffering from serious mental health conditions. The potential benefits of LSD-assisted therapy for end-of-life anxiety and MDMA-assisted treatments for PTSD and social anxiety are detailed, providing an inspiring overview of new ways to efficiently help people.
Psych Central details how recent scientific research into psychedelic drugs including LSD, MDMA, and psilocybin is providing innovative treatment methods that may potentially benefit serious mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD.
Think Progress reports about the results from a new study conducted at New York University measuring the connection between the number of cannabinoid receptors in the brain and the effects of PTSD while highlighting other recent research. The article also details the government interference that is preventing scientists from accessing the legal supply of marijuana to be used for research purposes.
Brad Burge of MAPS is interviewed on the Burt Cohen Show about the success of Psychedelic Science 2013, describing what happened when almost 2,000 attendees gathered together to learn about psychedelic research from over 100 speakers. Burge explains the process of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research in detail while also covering other successful psychedelic research currently taking place around the world.
SeekersWay interviews MAPS Director of Communication Brad Burge in Oakland at Psychedelic Science 2013, focusing on the success of the event, the connection between psychedelics and spirituality, and how new psychedelic research is providing innovative treatment methods for a variety of serious medical conditions.
French magazine Les In Rocks covers the success of MAPS’ research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. Researcher Michael Mithoefer speaks about his experience conducting studies using MDMA as well as his expectations for the future of psychedelic research.
Metro News details how scientists are researching drugs including LSD, psilocybin, and MDMA as potential treatment methods for a variety of mental health conditions including addiction, PTSD, depression, anxiety, and more.
KNAU Arizona Public Radio reports on a new law allowing medical marijuana research to be conducted on university campuses in Arizona. MAPS’ Principal Investigator for medical marijuana research, Dr. Sue Sisley explains, “I think that’s the real purpose of a public university, to be able to examine subjects that are hard or controversial or complex in an environment that isn’t plagued by politics.” Sisley is looking to study the effects of medical marijuana for veterans with treatment-resistant PTSD and she has already begun to receive approval from necessary entities.
International Center for Ethnobotanical Research & Service (ICEERS) reviews their experience of attending Psychedelic Science 2013, providing recaps of presentations, workshops, key events, and much more.
The Yorker reports on the political climate in the United Kingdom that surrounds Professor David Nutt’s proposal to research the medical potential of psilocybin mushrooms. Author Simon Lillistone presents an overview of current psychedelic research, detailing how conditions including PTSD, depression, and anxiety may benefit from further studies.
Dr. Sue Sisley tells Medical Marijuana 411 about why she believes medical marijuana can help people suffering from PTSD, and how NIDA and the DEA are preventing clinical research into the healing potential of marijuana.
Greg Miller of Wired interviews MAPS Founder and Executive Director Rick Doblin about his recent visits to the Pentagon to discuss treating PTSD in veterans with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy with senior military officials. Doblin also discusses the success of the Psychedelic Science 2013 conference and events, explains how MDMA-assisted psychotherapy works, and shares his vision for the future of psychedelic medicine.
Sofia University hosts a live discussion between psychedelic researcher James Fadiman, Ph.D., and Brad Burge of MAPS about the potential for psychedelics to be used as tools for healing, growth, and discovery.
Irish Examiner reports about current research into psychedelics and marijuana, sharing a list of medical conditions benefiting from these scientific studies. The article goes on to examines the scientific and political landscape surrounding current and future research.
Vice conducts a series of spontaneous interviews with people on the streets of London with the aim of deducing whether or not the general public is open to the idea of using MDMA as an adjunct to therapy.
Right Side News writes about the current psychedelic research movement that is generating new treatment methods for a variety of medical treatments. The article highlights psychedelic research and educational initiatives being promoted by MAPS.
Vice examines the merits of using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD by summarizing past, current, and upcoming research. The article dedicates much of its length to the imminent research that will take place in Canada, noting that the necessary MDMA to be used in the study has been exported from Switzerland to Canada.
Healthline reports on a new study of psychedelic usage among US citizens. The study authors estimate that 32 million people in the U.S. have taken a psychedelic such as LSD, psilocybin, or mescaline, noting that men aged 30-34 show the highest level of exposure to psychedelics.
Reason shares the groundbreaking success of Psychedelic Science 2013, sharing information about current psychedelic research initiatives aiming to create new treatment methods for a variety of medical conditions.
Wired Magazine attends Psychedelic Science 2013 and shares how scientists and doctors around the world have “rekindled the scientific study of psychedelics.” Greg Miller’s article takes the science seriously while acknowledging that it isn’t science as usual but rather an exciting new field with impacts in neuroscience research as well as technology and medicine.
Motherboard writes about the recent visit to the Pentagon of MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin, PhD, to discuss MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research and encourage support for the studies. Article author Brian Anderson explains, “It’s a fool’s errand to say that the US military entertaining the idea of working with a reknowned psychedelics research group isn’t a sign that our notions of both war and therapeutic (and illicit) drugs aren’t changing, and quick.”
Courthouse News Service details a federal court’s decision to side with the Drug Enforcement Agency in a case revolving around the regulation of research-quality marijuana. Professor Lyle Craker has been fighting for 12 years to end the NIDA monopoly on marijuana for research in an attempt to help people suffering from serious medical conditions.
CBC interviews ayahuasca researcher Gerald Thomas about his recently completed Canadian MAPS-sponsored study of ayahuasca. Thomas educates the CBC audience about the benefits of ayahuasca, sharing early reactions from his study.
AlterNet reviews Psychedelic Science 2013, detailing the documented benefits that psychedelic research is providing. While explaining current research initiatives, the review also notes the large presence of ayahuasca researchers, appreciates the friendly community, and details future plans for studies.
Drug Truth Network interviews MAPS Director of Communications Brad Burge in a podcast focusing on Psychedelic Science 2013. Burge underscores the success of the conference while speaking about conference events and the large turnout of researchers and attendees interested in the science surrounding psychedelic substances.
The Daily Californian at UC Berkeley reviews of Psychedelic Science 2013, summarizing lectures and new information about clinical studies into psychedelics and more. The article notes the success of this wave of research, offering optimism for further studies.
Medical Daily shares the news that MAPS is bringing research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy to Canada. Nine grams of MDMA have been exported to Canada from Switzerland, marking a significant step forward in our international effort to help people suffering from PTSD.
Backbencher provides an extensive overview of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, highlighting the innovative treatment method as a tool to help people overcome treatment-resistant PTSD. The article takes a look at possibilities for future research while listing locations around the world where MDMA research continues.
Popular Science explores common misconceptions and scientific research into MDMA. The article provides quotes from MAPS Clinical Investigator Michael Mithoefer, who explains that drugs bought and sold illegally often contain added components that can dramatically increase their risk.
The Cincinnati Enquirer reports on the current state of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) treatments in response to a new $9 million study of PTSD to be conducted in Cincinnati. The article highlights MAPS’ research efforts, detailing how treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy can help people overcome treatment resistant PTSD.
Stop the Drug War reports on Psychedelic Science 2013, sharing information from a variety of lectures on using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy to treat PTSD. The article features quotes from researchers and veterans, providing an optimistic outlook for the future of treating PTSD.
UOL provides coverage of Psychedelic Science 2013 by highlighting the event’s diversity in subject matter and attendees. The article also provides an overview of the large ayahuasca presence, sharing information about the psychedelic’s popularity in research and culture.
The Beckley Foundation Founder Amanda Feilding details the history of Bicycle Day, the anniversary of the first intentional LSD experience. Feilding provides insight into the resurgence of psychedelic research, remarking on the success of research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD and other initiatives.
CBC News announces that nine grams of MDMA have been exported to Canada from Switzerland to be used in our upcoming study of using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD, led by psychologist Andrew Feldmar.
Southern California Public Radio explores Psychedelic Science 2013. Scientists are presenting massive amounts of research results indicating that psychedelics such as LSD, MDMA, psilocybin, ayahuasca, and more can provide benefits to people suffering from serious medical conditions.
The National Post reviews The Substance, a new documentary about the history of LSD. The article highlights the therapeutic potential of LSD-assisted psychotherapy while also covering psychedelic research into using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating PTSD.
Popular Science reports on the state of medical marijuana research, noting that studies are being blocked by governmental agencies such as the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the Drug Enforcement Agency. After an unsuccessful twelve-year struggle in court with these agencies, Professor Lyle Craker explains, “If you’re going to run a trial to show this is going to have positive effects, they’re essentially not going to allow it.”
Stop the Drug War takes a critical look at the US First Circuit Court of Appeals’ ruling against Prof. Lyle Craker’s lawsuit against the Drug Enforcement Agency for denying him a license to grow marijuana for research. This decision comes twelve years after Prof. Craker decided to take action against the anti-science policies that prevent federally sanctioned studies of the medical benefits of marijuana.
Good Times Weekly reports on the Ayahuasca Track at Psychedelic Science 2013, calling it the largest gathering of ayahuasca researchers ever. In addition to the healing potential of ayahuasca, the article notes how research into LSD, MDMA, and psilocybin is moving forward with success.
On April 15, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit rejected University of Massachusetts-Amherst Prof. Lyle Craker’s lawsuit against the Drug Enforcement Administration for denying him a license to grow marijuana for privately funded medical research. With its decision, the Court has ensured that the debate over the medical use of marijuana will continue to take place through political battles rather than through scientific research.
Bloomberg News provides a comprehensive overview of how medical marijuana research is facing significant government-imposed obstacles. The National Institute of Drug Abuse’s refusal to provide marijuana necessary is impeding comprehensive study proposals. Bob Melamede, CEO of Cannabis Science Inc., elaborates, “If you want to run a study to show it cures cancer, they will not provide you with marijuana.”
Reality Sandwich contributor Nese Devenot interviews MAPS Director of Communications Brad Burge about Psychedelic Science 2013, touching upon the diversity of the event, attendance milestones, and how the public perception of psychedelics is continuing to become more accepting.
Medical Daily reports on the obstacles preventing further psilocybin research from taking place in the United Kingdom. Professor David Nutt’s previous research indicated that psilocybin could be used to help treat depression, though his new proposal for additional studies is currently stuck in a standstill.
New York Magazine explores the current state of psychedelics, highlighting the therapeutic and medical potential of psychedelics while also exploring the emergence of new synthetic drugs. The article showcases current research, providing readers with information about how scientists are creating innovative treatment methods for medical conditions such as PTSD, anxiety, and more.
Reuters exposes Professor David Nutt’s successful research into using psilocybin as a treatment method for depression. Further research is being prevented by government-imposed obstacles. Nutt explains his current mission, “What we are trying to do is to tap into the reservoir of under-researched illegal drugs to see if we can find new and beneficial uses for them in people whose lives are often severely affected by illnesses such as depression.”
The Lawrentian reports on how a discussion about the benefits of treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy was hosted at Lawrence University. The conversation also touched upon the use of psychedelics for creativity and problem solving, and was led by MAPS Executive and Clinical Research Assistant Linnae Ponté, featuring an appearance from MAPS Founder Rick Doblin via video teleconference.
The Daily Campus looks at the current state of drug research while comparing the medical and recreational uses of various drugs. The article highlights marijuana’s anticancer properties, MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treating PTSD, and more.
Columbia University’s student-run online magazine reviews an event where researchers came together to thoroughly discuss MDMA, from its increasing prevalence in popular culture to its potential to treat serious conditions such as PTSD. The event was organized by Columbia’s Students for Sensible Drug Policy chapter and featured panelists Allison Bajger, a doctoral candidate at Columbia, Ingmar Gorman, a doctoral candidate at the New School, Brittany Lewis of Global Grind, and Dr. Lewis-McCoy from CUNY’s City College.
Kamloops News reports on the recent approval of MAPS’ upcoming Canadian study focusing on treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. After the long review process, Health Canada is giving us permission to import 9 grams of MDMA to be used in the study.
Sam Woolfe of Backbencher reports on the current state of psychedelic-assisted therapy, highlighting MAPS in addition to Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris’ psilocybin and LSD research. The article presents the idea of a future where doctors and therapists will efficiently use psychedelic-assisted therapy to benefit their patients.
Michelle Aldrich writes for Alternet about how people diagnosed with cancer can benefit from medical marijuana. She mentions how MAPS Founder Rick Doblin’s recommendation of a specific therapist helped her healing process move in a much quicker pace.
The San Francisco Chronicle highlights Sofia University’s increasing popularity for students interested in careers in psychedelic research and medicine. Sofia University is hoping to attract new students to their unique programs by co-sponsoring Psychedelic Science 2013 and hosting an upcoming lecture focusing on similar subject matter featuring James Fadiman, Ph.D., and Brad Burge of MAPS.
Alternet reviews psychedelic researcher Thomas Roberts’ new book, The Psychedelic Future of the Mind, which explores current psychedelic studies and how future psychedelic research may move beyond a purely medical context. While summarizing the contents of the book, the author highlights efforts from MAPS, Johns Hopkins University, and more in their pursuit of validating the benefits of psychedelics through scientific research.
The Boston Globe provides a detailed account of medical marijuana in both scientific and legal contexts. Despite its Schedule I status, MAPS’ proposed medical marijuana research has received approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Professor Lyle Craker won a 2009 Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Administrative Law Judge hearing and is now suing the DEA for rejecting his application to start a farm to provide marijuana to privately-funded research. MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin is interviewed, speaking on how the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the DEA are preventing vital research from happening.
Dr. Richard Miller of Mind Body Health and Politics interviews MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin about his interest in psychedelics, the history and politics surrounding psychedelic research, and how studies conducted by MAPS are developing effective treatment methods for a variety of medical conditions.
Research Radio at The New School for Social Research analyzes the past half-century of psychedelic research in an expansive segment featuring New School anthropologist Nick Langlitz. The program details studies focusing on the medical potential of psychedelics, the birth of the psychedelic counterculture, and the future of clinical research into substances including MDMA, LSD, and psilocybin.
Think Progress encapsulates comments made by theoretical physicist John H. Schwarz of the California Institute of Technology regarding the medical marijuana research blockade enforced by NIDA and the DEA. Schwarz posits, “Imagine what would happen to the environment if we gave coal and oil companies the power to block any climate research they didn’t like.”
The Daily Chronic reports on the current state of medical marijuana research in Arizona. A new bill that will end the ban on researching medical marijuana at Arizona colleges is advancing through legislature. After receiving approval from the Food and Drug Administration and the University of Arizona’s Institutional Review Board, Dr. Sue Sisley’s proposed research into the benefits of medical marijuana for treating PTSD is facing further obstacles as research resistance is maintained by the Drug Enforcement Agency and the National Institute of Drug Abuse.
Boston’s NPR News Station WBUR 90.9 FM interviews Rick Doblin, Ph.D., of MAPS and Professor Lyle Craker about the federal government’s medical marijuana blockade and how it is affecting proposed scientific research.
AZ Central explains how the Senate Health and Human Services committee of Arizona have approved a bill that would allow medical marijuana research to be conducted at university and college campuses in Arizona. Dr. Sue Sisley aims to conduct research at the University of Arizona, and has proposed a study into the potential benefits of using medical marijuana to treat PTSD. The study has received approval from all required entities except for the Drug Enforcement Agency and the National Institute of Drug Abuse, who continue to block the research.
AirTalk, a KPCC Southern California Public Radio program, educates their audience about how research into the benefits of psychedelics is creating new, effective treatment methods for a variety of serious medical conditions. KPCC interviews researchers Anthony P. Bossis, Ph.D. and Charles Grob, M.D. about the resurgence of studying psychedelics.
Herbal Gram Magazine provides a sweeping overview of Israel’s successful research into the benefits of medical marijuana, which has started a nationwide change in health care. MAPS Founder & Executive Director Rick Doblin explains, “We have insurance companies deciding it is a smart investment to cover medical marijuana. Israel is the only place I know of where that happens.”
ABC News Charleston provides coverage of MAPS’ research MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD, featuring interviews with Clinical Investigator Michael Mithoefer, M.D., and Ret. Maj. Ricky Smith, a veteran who participated in the study.
MAPS Founder & Executive Director Rick Doblin responds to former DEA administrator Robert Bonner’s claims that “not a single scientifically valid study by a qualified researcher has ever been denied by the DEA or, for that matter, by the National Institute of Drug Abuse.”
The Atlantic interviews Oxford ethicist Brian Earp about his advocacy for using MDMA as a way to strengthen relationships. Earp specifically mentions treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as one of the other innovative uses of MDMA.
The Los Angeles Times offers an editorial about how the DEA and NIDA’s interference with medical marijuana research proposals is the cause of a recent ruling to keep the drug listed as Schedule I. Regarding the DEA’s actions, the article offers perspective; “For a muscular agency that combats vicious drug criminals, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration acts like a terrified and obstinate toddler when it comes to basic science. “
Policymic writes about how activists are working hard to get government-approved medical marijuana research to take place after a recent court ruling decided against rescheduling marijuana to acknowledge its medical benefits.
Americans for Safe Access issues a statement after a federal court rejects their lawsuit against the DEA to reschedule medical marijuana. Citing lack of scientific studies, clinical research into medical marijuana is more important than ever.
The Globe and Mail covers the recent resurgence of psychedelic research, detailing how new clinical studies are contributing to the development of new, innovative treatments for PTSD, addiction, depression, and more.
Jane’s Defence Weekly provides detailed coverage of our recently completed Swiss study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a PTSD treatment, highlighting the need for a new, effective treatment method to help veterans.
The Living Hero Radio Show showcases Trips Beyond Addiction, a new audio documentary focusing on how scientists are exploring psychedelics in the treatment of addiction, featuring interviews from Brad Burge of MAPS and other knowledgeable guests.
TruthOut takes a detailed look at posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), reviewing traditional treatments and exploring new, innovative treatment methods. The article highlights MAPS’ research proposal for treating PTSD with medical marijuana at the University of Arizona, as well as our promising studies using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD.
Dr. Sue Sisley’s proposal to conduct medical marijuana research at the University of Arizona meets legal resistance after receiving the necessary approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the university’s Institutional Review Board.
Don Lattin, author of Distilled Spirits and The Harvard Psychedelic Club, publishes an extensive report for Spirituality & Health Magazine on the recent wave of psychedelic research that is creating new, innovative treatment methods for medical conditions such as PTSD, addiction, anxiety, and more. International media coverage of psychedelic research is slowly increasing mainstream recognition of the need for research into substances such as LSD, MDMA, ayahuasca, and psilocybin. Neşe Devenot of Psychedemia notes, “You can talk about this now at the dinner table without coming across as some kind of fanatic.”
Subjects with chronic, treatment-resistant posttraumatic stress disorder experienced clinically meaningful improvements and no evidence of harm after participating in a small Swiss study evaluating MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, according to a paper published yesterday in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.
The National Post provides coverage of Health Canada’s decision to allow MDMA research to be conducted in Canada. Researchers Dr. Ingrid Pacey and Andrew Feldmár will import nine grams of MDMA from a Swiss laboratory in order to to conduct studies focusing on treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy.
MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin offers his input in response to an article featured on The Guardian. While touching upon the author’s and commenters’ points, Rick provides clarification about our MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research.
The Guardian highlights scientific research results indicating that Treating PTSD with MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy can help participants overcome PTSD without causing memory impairment or proclivity to drug abuse. Read MAPS Founder Rick Doblin’s response to the article and its comments here.
Jacob Sullum of Reason corrects Kent Sepkowitz’s inaccurate claims about MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research from an article posted on The Daily Beast. Sullum provides the facts necessary to refute the unfounded claims, in addition to providing his own views on MDMA research. Read The Daily Beast’s orginal article and read MAPS Founder Rick Doblin’s response to the Daily Beast article.
MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin corrects The Daily Beast author Kent Sepkowitz’s inaccurate claims about research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy by providing factual, scientific information.
Kent Sepkowitz writes for The Daily Beast, incorrectly claiming that our completed pilot study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD did not reach statistical significance and accusing researchers of overstating the results. Read MAPS Founder Rick Doblin’s response here and Jacob Sullum of Reason’s coverage of the conflicting information here.
UPDATE: On January 7, 2013, Kent Sepkowitz posted an apology for misreading the study results. Read the update here.
Marine Corps Times writes about promising research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. The article highlights current research and results, while mentioning upcoming research that will focus on veterans, police officers, and firefighters.
SF Gate writes about the legalization of marijuana, highlighting how a variety of organizations, including the Drug Policy Alliance, NORML, MAPS, High Times Magazine, and others are working toward changing how the public feels about marijuana through social campaigns, research initiatives, and educational efforts.
Medscape covers our research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, noting that the study helped 83% of participants overcome their previously treatment-resistant PTSD. The article goes on to talk about the future of the treatment, citing hopeful projections of future research.
Fierce Biotech, a biotechnology industry publication, reports on scientific research into the effects of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD, highlighting the new therapy as a promising alternative to traditional treatments.
Reality Sandwich contributor Ido Hartogsohn shares a recent interview with MAPS Founder Rick Doblin, where he speaks about how he became interested in researching psychedelics, how he believes MDMA research will pan out, how MAPS is participating in harm reduction, and much more.
The Raw Story covers Rachel Hope’s participation in our study of Treating PTSD with MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy, which provided her a long-lasting reduction to her PTSD symptoms. “I kept getting better.”
Reuters summarizes how scientific research into the medical potential of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy can help people overcome treatment-resistant PTSD. The article includes insights from researchers, a PTSD expert, and a professor in psychiatry and neuroscience. “The taboos are lifting, and people are getting practical about science,” Dr. Michael Mithoefer said.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN interviews Rachel Hope about her experience as a participant in our MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research. “I had all this access to my mind and I could control where I was thinking and going and look at things differently.”
The Age reports the state of MDMA research, highlighting our recent study focusing on treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. The article also details Psychedelic Research in Science and Medicine (PRISM) and their efforts to conduct similar research in Australia.
After receiving over a thousand comments in response to their three-part series, CNN continues the discussion surrounding research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy by showcasing a selection of readers’ thoughts, reactions, comments, and opinions.
CNN completes their three-part series on MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD by analyzing facts surrounding both PTSD and MDMA, in addition to detailing Rachel Hope’s experience during and after receiving the therapy.
Psychology Today offers an interpretation of our results into research focusing on treating PTSD in veterans, victims of sexual assault, first responders, and more. The experimental treatment uses MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a tool to help people overcome PTSD.
CNN continues with the second installment of their three-part series covering our MDMA research and further profiles Rachel Hope, a participant in an MDMA-assisted psychotherapy study who was able to overcome PTSD as a result. The article details how MDMA was originally created and how MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research came to be a reality.
CNN begins their three-part series focusing on treating posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy by offering an extensive overview of the research. Rachel Hope, a woman who previously suffered from PTSD, received the treatment in 2005 and shares thoughts about her experience.
The Raw Story examines statements made by MAPS Founder Rick Doblin, Ph.D., from a video podcast hosted by Alexander Ward. Doblin speaks about creating MAPS, researching MDMA, his ibogaine experience, and how psychedelics may hold hope for the future of medicine.
News.com.au provides an overview of MAPS’ recent research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD, in addition to covering upcoming research efforts from our Australia-based non-profit colleagues, PRISM (Psychedelic Research in Science and Medicine).
Salem News writes about the use of medical marijuana and MDMA as treatments for PTSD. Noting recent research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment method for PTSD, an optimistic outlook for the future of medicine if projected.
The Independent covers recent research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD, citing long-term follow-up results that show the treatment’s benefits were maintained an average of 3 years later.
In response to an article criticizing our recent research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, Dr. Ben Sessa offers his comments on the article, providing detailed rebuttals to unfounded claims made by Mancunian Matters.
Alternet describes the results of MAPS’ long-term follow-up research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, highlighting that the 16 participants maintained improvements an average of 45 months after treatment.
The Psychiatric Times reviews Andrew Penn’s 2012 US Psychiatric & Mental Health Congress talk in which he educated the audience about a variety of drugs, including research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD. He highlighted that 83% of participants maintained improvements in PTSD an average of 3 years later.
Andrew Sullivan writes for The Daily Beast about how scientific research into psychedelic drugs, such as studying MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD, is diminishing the stigma surrounding psychedelics.
The Raw Story goes into great detail about research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy as a treatment for PTSD, detailing everything from the “therapeutic alliance” between the therapists and participant, to sharing encouraging results that show promise for future medical advancements.
Gather responds to MDMA-assisted psychotherapy research results by offering some staggering statistics about how much of our population currently suffers from PTSD without hope for a working treatment.
Stars and Stripes offers a recap of results from our long-term follow-up research into treating posttraumatic stress disorder with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. The article also highlights our initiative to research medical marijuana as a treatment method for people suffering from PTSD.
Z6 Mag posts a lot of information and videos revolving around our research into treating PTSD with MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, ranging from CNN interviews, to the lead psychotherapist speaking at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs.
Military.com reports on the implications of our research into MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for veterans with PTSD. “Completing the studies necessary to make this treatment available will require increasing financial and political support from both within and outside the military,” said Brad Burge of MAPS. “We provide men and women in the armed forces with the most advanced tools of war. It’s time we gave them the most advanced tools of healing, too.”
People suffering from chronic, treatment-resistant posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) experienced lasting benefits from MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, according to a new long-term follow-up study published online November 20 in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.
The New York Times announces today’s publication of the paper describing the results of our long-term follow-up study, showing that MDMA-assisted psychotherapy can have lasting benefits for people suffering from PTSD. The results were published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology, indicating that 83% of participants did not qualify for PTSD two months after treatment, and on average, improvements were maintained an average of 3.8 years later.
The Yale Daily News interviews Dr. James Fadiman, Ph.D., author of The Psychedelic Explorer’s Guide, about his experience researching LSD, how psychedelic drugs influenced social movements in the 1960’s, and the prospective future of prescription psychedelics.
The Gazette reports on requests from Colorado veterans suffering from PTSD to have access to medical marijuana. Amendment 64, which passed on November 6, now allows the legal use of marijuana statewide.
In response to the 2012 election, Truthout provides a full overview of state initiatives with the goal of changing medical marijuana policy. Opponents of medical marijuana suggest that more marijuana research should be conducted before making it more widely available, though the article details how some government agencies (like NIDA) are making scientific research almost impossible to accomplish.
The Spirit Plant Medicine Conference gathered scientists, scholars, and shamans to present and discuss the latest research results into naturally occurring psychedelic drugs, such as psilocybin, ayahuasca, and ibogaine.
Erik Davis writes for Aeon Magazine about progression in the field of medicine as a result of the current wave of psychedelic research. Scientists contributing to research have developed potential treatments for a variety of medical conditions, including cancer, anxiety, and depression.
Dr. John Schwarz writes for The Huffington Post Blog about how medical marijuana is still excluded from research despite President Obama’s memorandum that science would guide federal policy decisions. Dr. Sue Sisley received approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to conduct research into marijuana as a treatment for veterans suffering from PTSD, but the study was blocked when the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) refused to sell the marijuana necessary to conduct the study.