Husband and wife duo dive into current state of psychedelic research

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Husband and wife Dustin and Rochelle Hines, researchers at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), recently discussed the revival of psychedelic research and the impact substances such as psilocybin mushrooms, LSD and MDMA could have in treating a range of mental health conditions. NYU to develop ‘one-of-a-kind’ psychedelic medicine centre Canadian healthcare professionals begin historic psilocybin therapy training program Retired admiral advocates for Australia to reschedule psychedelic drugs In a media release from UNLV, Dustin Hines attributes the renewed interest in psychedelics with “decreasing societal stigma regarding drugs like hallucinogens and cannabis, increasing awareness of the potential therapeutic compounds found naturally occurring in plants and fungi, and the growing mental health crisis our nation faces.” Rochelle Hines noted that current therapies for major depression are only effective in some individuals, which is one factor that makes the study of psychedelic compounds, as well as  novel therapies, so intriguing. “Recent clinical studies have empirically demonstrated that these compounds can exert rapid antidepressant effects — essentially bringing into the clinic a practice that Mesoamerican and other cultures have used for thousands of years,” she said, adding that modern medicine is reinventing psychedelic practices that date back more than 5,000 years. “Despite this long history and recent clinical promise, we still really don’t know just how these drugs actually work on the brain to influence mood,” he said. A recent study from the duo that looked at brain activity in a rodent model found that nicotine “enhanced both the brain’s slow waveform as well as behavioural arrest, both hallmark aspects of the response to psychedelic hallucinogens.” The duo is now examining whether or not nicotine enhances the anti-depressant effects of psychedelics. Additionally, they are investigating the cellular and molecular brain responses following treatment with psychedelics. “With this understanding, we may be able…

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