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Study: Synthetic 'magic mushroom' can help treat depression

Virus Outbreak Mental Health
Posted at 1:51 PM, Nov 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-03 15:51:34-04

People suffering from depression may benefit from a synthetic form of psilocybin, also known as "magic mushrooms."

According to the results of a phase 2 double-blind trial that were published in the New England Journal of Medicine, psilocybin improved rates of depression in the study's participants.

The trial tested different dosages of psilocybin: 25 milligrams, 10 milligrams and 1 milligram. It found that the 25-milligram dose reduced depression significantly more than the 1-milligram dose.

In addition to psilocybin, the trial participants were given "psychological support."

The study's authors believe the results are promising and require further study. They note how the effects of psilocybin appeared to wear off after several weeks.

"Depression can be a long-lasting problem and much longer follow-up periods than 12 weeks should be used," Dr. Ravi Das told the BBC.

Larger trials are reportedly in the works and it could be years before the synthetic form of psilocybin used in the study could be prescribed.