Receive our newsletter – data, insights and analysis delivered to you
  1. News
December 1, 2016

New study reveals hallucinogenic drug psilocybin reduces cancer patients’ distress

A new study conducted by NYU Langone Medical Center researchers has revealed that a single dose of hallucinogenic drug psilocybin relieves anxiety and depression in patients with advanced cancer.

A new study conducted by NYU Langone Medical Center researchers has revealed that a single dose of hallucinogenic drug psilocybin relieves anxiety and depression in patients with advanced cancer.

According to the study report, one-time treatment with a mind-altering compound contained in psychedelic mushrooms reduced the distress in 80% of the 29 study subjects monitored.

During the study, 50% of the participants were administered a 0.3mg per kilogram dose of psilocybin while the remaining patients were given a vitamin placebo (250mg of niacin).

After the seven week-long monitoring period, all participants switched treatments.

NYU Langone Department of Psychiatry substance abuse services director Stephen Ross said: "Our results represent the strongest evidence to date of a clinical benefit from psilocybin therapy, with the potential to transform care for patients with cancer-related psychological distress.

Content from our partners
Why this global life sciences COO believes relocation to Charleston, SC, was key to achieving next-level success
Patient-centric pharma logistics: How CRYOPDP delivers hope worldwide
Why Asia-Pacific is the next frontier for decentralized clinical trials

"If larger clinical trials prove successful, then we could ultimately have available a safe, effective, and inexpensive medication, dispensed under strict control, to alleviate the distress that increases suicide rates among cancer patients.”

"According to the study report, one-time treatment with a mind-altering compound contained in psychedelic mushrooms reduced the distress in 80% of the 29 study subjects monitored."

The study involved mostly women aged between 22 and 75 who had either advanced breast, gastrointestinal, or blood cancers and had been diagnosed as suffering from serious psychological distress related to their disease.

All patients in the study were provided with tailored counselling from a psychiatrist, psychologist, nurse or social worker, and were monitored for side effects and improvements in their mental state.

The study was backed by a funding from the Heffter Research Institute and the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, part of the National Institutes of Health.

The drug used in the study was manufactured by Organix.


Image: The drug psilocybin in pill form. Photo: courtesy of PRNewsFoto/NYU Langone Medical Center.

Related Companies

NEWSLETTER Sign up Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. Key drug pipeline and competitive landscape changes based on the latest clinical activity, sent every Tuesday. Curated analysis and data-driven insights on clinical trials strategy and operations, sent every Thursday. The pharmaceutical industry's most comprehensive news and information delivered every month.
I consent to GlobalData UK Limited collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy
SUBSCRIBED

THANK YOU