Psychedelic research in the news

Although much scientific research on psychedelics was conducted during the 60’s, the subject became a taboo when the Controlled Substances Act was introduced in the early 70’s. Now, using strict protocols and safeguards, more and more studies on psychedelics are being approved and carried out. The media seem to be catching on, too.

A brief summary of recently published articles and events:

MAPS Conference
The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) is a non-profit research and educational organization. MAPS plays an important role in funding and setting up research projects involving psychedelics.
The 2010 MAPS conference brought together international experts on psychedelic substances and was the largest such conference to take place in the United States in 17 years. The 2010 conference was deemed a great success with numerous speakers presenting their ongoing and future academic research on psychedelics.

Scientific American on DMT
Guest blogger John Horgan recently wrote an interesting blog post on DMT and ayahuasca.

Scientific American on MDMA
Only days later, Scientific American also published a piece on MDMA and its effectiveness in relieving post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). At the MAPS conference psychiatrist and researcher Michael Mithoefer reported promising intermediate results of the 21-patient study.
After two or three MDMA sessions, patients who received MDMA experienced huge drops in symptoms as measured by a standard PTSD scale. After an average of 3.5 years, 13 of 16 patients remaining in contact with the researchers no longer met the criteria for PTSD.

New York Times
In an article published on the first page of the New York Times, the most recent developments and findings in psychedelic research are discussed. More than 350 readers commented on this article!

Playboy (pdf)
Even Playboy dedicated a piece of no less than 9 pages to the ‘psychedelic renaissance’.

Stanislav Grof
Grof is known for his early studies of LSD and its effects on the psyche—the field of psychedelic psychotherapy. In this Alternet article it is described how Stanislav Grof played a key role in the dawn of a new psychedelic research era.

For those wanting to discuss psychonautical matters, check out Psychonaut.com. To stay updated on the latest news in the field of psychedelic research, follow Azarius on Twitter.