In defence of the decriminalisation of drug possession in the UK

Authors Alex Stevens, Niamh Eastwood and Kirstie Douse Published March 24, 2024 Abstract In this review article, we develop the case for the decriminalisation of drug possession in the UK by describing our ‘modest proposal’ to repeal the relevant sections of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 and its advantages. We defend this proposal against  …


Childhood trauma, challenging experiences, and post traumatic growth in ayahuasca use

Authors Ksenia Cassidy, CJ Healy, Eva Henje and Wendy D’Andrea Published March 20, 2024 Abstract Challenging experiences in ayahuasca use, childhood trauma, and posttraumatic growth have not been investigated systematically. This study aimed to explore whether a self-reported history of childhood trauma was associated with challenging experiences during acute ayahuasca effects and whether such challenging  …


Participation in an indigenous Amazonian-led ayahuasca retreat associated with increases in nature relatedness – a pilot study

Authors Simon GD Ruffell, Sam Gandy, WaiFung Tsang, Rono Lopez, Nathan O’Rourke, Arsalan Akhtar, Nige Netzband, Jack Hollingdale, Daniel Perkins and Jerome Sarris Published February 28, 2024 Abstract Indigenous Amazonian shamanic ayahuasca practice is embedded in a nature-based context and is employed as an ecological mediating agent and in collective environmental decision-making processes by some  …


A history of the European Medical Society for Psycholytic Therapy (EPT) 1964–1974

Authors Torsten Passie Published February 22, 2024 Abstract The emergence of a so-called psychedelic renaissance has been proposed to characterize the revival of research into (psycho-)therapies using psychedelic drugs. In Europe, the most widespread approach employed in the 1960s and 1970s that involved the use of drugs like LSD and psilocybin as an adjunct to  …


Minorities’ diminished psychedelic returns: Cardio-metabolic health

Authors Sean Matthew Viña Published January 9, 2024 Abstract Although there is a growing support for the protective factor of psychedelics to improve mental and physical health, these effects may differ across racial and ethnic groups. Race differences remain a critically understudied gap in psychedelic literature. Recent empirical research into Minority Diminished Psychedelic Returns suggests  …


Decrypting the cryptomarkets: Trends over a decade of the Dark Web drug trade

Authors Harjeev Kour Sudan, Andy Man Yeung Tai, Jane Kim and Reinhard Michael Krausz Published November 19, 2023 Introduction The Dark Web is a subsection of the Internet only accessible through specific search engines, making it impossible to trace users. Due to extensive anonymity, the drug trade on the Dark Web makes regulation complicated. We  …


Can ayahuasca reduce inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity? A pilot study

Authors WaiFung Tsang, Simon GD Ruffell, Nigel Netzband, Angelina Jong, James Rucker, Quinton Deeley and Jack Hollingdale Published November 16, 2023 Background The potential benefits of ayahuasca on mental health conditions are well documented. This pilot study is the first to explore whether there is an association with ayahuasca use and reductions in inattention, hyperactivity  …


The impact of over the counter and prescription medication misuse on friends and family

Authors Rosalind Gittins, Roya Vaziri, and Ian Maidment Published November 16, 2023 Introduction Over the counter and prescription-only medication misuse is of concern. Little is known about the impact on friends/family who provide individuals with support. It is important to increase understanding to identify how substance misuse services (SMS) and others can better meet their  …


From prohibited to prescribed: The rescheduling of MDMA and psilocybin in Australia

Authors Octavian Dixon Ritchie, Cameron N Donley and Gabrielle Dixon Ritchie Published September 6, 2023 Background On February 3, 2023, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care, announced that on July 1, 2023, the psychedelics 3′4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) and psilocybin will be medically accessible and regulated for psychiatric use in  …


Racial and religious motives for drug criminalization

Authors Petter Grahl Johnstad Published September 6, 2023 Abstract The world has a long-standing system of drug control intended to suppress the use of a range of psychoactive drugs on the basis that such use is very harmful both to the users themselves and to their social surroundings. This perception of harmfulness has a long  …


MDMA-assisted psychotherapy with adolescents suffering from PTSD: Do or don’t? a qualitative study with youth, parents, and clinicians

Authors Anoek S Van Vugt, Josjan Zijlmans, Ramon Lindauer and Levi Van Dam Published September 1, 2023 Background PTSD in adolescence causes much suffering and has substantial health-care costs. Many patients with severe PTSD do not respond to psychotherapy or continue to have symptoms despite trauma-focused psychotherapies and psychopharmacological treatment. A recent alternative in the  …


Perceived barriers to access to hepatitis C for people who inject drugs in Morocco: A qualitative explorative study

Authors Zakaria Belrhiti and Fatima Zohra Serghini Published September 1, 2023 Background Worldwide, approximately there are 15.6 million people who inject drugs. Recently, a rising prevalence of hepatitis C virus among the people who inject drugs community (8.2 million, 40 to 80% of people who inject drugs) urged governments to implement targeted preventive and structural  …


Could classic psychedelics influence immigrants’ acculturation process? A narrative review contemplating how

Authors Benjamin A. Korman Published July 31, 2023 Abstract Rising international migration, paired with increasing public support for far-right political parties, poses a growing challenge to the countries tasked with successfully integrating immigrants into their society. Further complicating this matter is the fact that the acculturation process which immigrants undergo to fully integrate into their  …


A phenomenological analysis of Fellini's films to understand the effect of LSD therapy on his creativity

Authors Antonio Metastasio, Silvio Mignogna, Riccardo Paci, Milena Mancini, Fabio Melelli, Enrico Lando, Ornella Corazza and Giovanni Stanghellini Published July 31, 2023 Abstract Since its discovery in 1943, LSD has been used by artists, scientists, and intellectuals, amongst others, to stimulate their creative insights. Federico Fellini, one of the most important film directors in the  …


Impact of the introduction of medical cannabis in the UK on risk perception and recreational use of cannabis: A longitudinal and cross-sectional analysis

Authors Jon Waldron, Meryem Grabski, Tom P Freeman, Margriet Van Laar and Valerie Curran Published July 4, 2023 Background Cannabis was rescheduled in the UK in November 2018 so that it can now be prescribed as a treatment for certain medical conditions. It is not yet known whether this has had an impact on peoples’  …


Minorities’ diminished psychedelic returns

Authors Sean M Viña and Amanda L Stephens Published June 23, 2023 Abstract Although there is a growing support for the use of psychedelics to improve the health of marginalized groups, there are some critical gaps. First, no empirical studies have examined the effects of psychedelics on Black Americans. Second, there is little research on  …


Italian psychedelic therapies of the past century: An historical overview

Authors Adriana D’Arienzo and Giorgio Samorini Published June 6, 2023 Abstract In recent years, the historical record of psychedelic therapy in Europe and the Americas has undergone considerable revision. In this article, we contribute to this re-interpretation by sharing documentation relating to psychedelic therapy carried out in Italy during the period 1927–1966. Our library research  …


Cost-effectiveness of psilocybin-assisted therapy for severe depression: exploratory findings from a decision analytic model

Authors Paul McCrone, Henry Fisher, Clare Knight, Rebecca Harding, Anne K. Schlag, David J. Nutt and Joanna C. Neill Published June 2, 2023 Abstract Background: There is growing evidence to support the use of the psychedelic drug psilocybin for difficult-to-treat depression. This paper compares the cost-effectiveness of psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy (PAP) with conventional medication, cognitive behavioural  …


Medicinal cannabis for pain: Real-world data on three-month changes in symptoms and quality of life

Authors Kylie O’Brien, Justin Beilby, Michelle Frans, Michael Lynskey, Michael Barnes, Mihindu Jayasuriya, Alkyoni Athanasiou-Fragkouli, Philip Blair and David Nutt Published May 25, 2023 Background Internationally, one of the most common conditions for which people seek medicinal cannabis (MC) is chronic pain. However, relatively little is known about the effectiveness of cannabis for reducing pain  …


ARC: a framework for access, reciprocity and conduct in psychedelic therapies

Authors Meg J. Spriggs, Ashleigh Murphy-Beiner, Roberta Murphy, Julia Bornemann, Hannah Thurgur and Anne K. Schlag. Published May 11, 2023 Abstract The field of psychedelic assisted therapy (PAT) is growing at an unprecedented pace. The immense pressures this places on those working in this burgeoning field have already begun to raise important questions about risk  …


Characteristics of and 3-month health outcomes for people seeking treatment with prescribed cannabis: Real-world evidence from Project Twenty21

Authors Michael T Lynskey, Anne K Schlag, Alkyoni Athanasiou-Fragkouli, David Badcock and David J Nutt Published May 2nd, 2023 Abstract Medicinal cannabis has been legal in the UK since 2018 but there is limited information about characteristics of people seeking prescribed cannabis and the effectiveness of this treatment. This paper documents symptom patterns and quality  …


A roadmap for psychedelic pharmacy in Canada

Authors Jaden Brandt Published April 25th, 2023 Abstract The unprecedented progress in the science and clinical investigation of psychedelic medicine will require those in healthcare leadership and the legislative policy arena to conceptualize how future reforms, policy creation, and clinical practice should occur to broaden access to these agents while simultaneously maximizing effectiveness and mitigating  …


Decriminalisation of drug possession in Oregon: Analysis and early lessons

Authors Kellen Russoniello, Sheila P. Vakharia, Jules Netherland, Theshia Naidoo, Haven Wheelock, Tera Hurst and Saba Rouhani Published April 6th, 2023 Abstract In November 2020, Oregon voters approved Measure 110, a ballot initiative that decriminalized possession of small quantities of all drugs and allocated hundreds of millions of dollars annually to health services for people  …


The use of chlordiazepoxide for outpatient gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) detoxification: An observational study

Authors Alfred Balston, Kuljit Hunjan, and Michael J Kelleher Published April 6th, 2023 Background Various detoxification regimens are used for gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB) and gamma-butyrolactone (GBL), including diazepam, barbiturates, baclofen and GHB itself. However, these regimens are primarily derived from inpatient units, and literature on outpatient GBL detoxification is sparse with no previous reports on chlordiazepoxide.  …


The United Kingdom's Psychoactive Substances Act 2016. Where are we now?

Authors Christopher Humphries Published November 14th, 2022 This narrative review describes the background to the introduction of the UK Psychoactive Substances Act 2016, and developments since the Home Office review of the Act in 2018. It discusses the challenges when measuring illicit drug proliferation, and triangulates the impact of the Act by using data from  …