Small Trial Suggests DMT Can Improve Symptoms of Depression

A recent study found the psychedelic DMT could improve symptoms of depression when used alongside therapy.

Full story after the jump.

A trial conducted by biotechnology company Small Pharma found that the psychedelic DMT could improve symptoms of depression when used in conjunction with therapy. In the study, which used intravenous DMT dosing, 14 participants out of 34 were in remission from depression within three months and nine remained in remission up to six months. 

The study, which utilized a proprietary synthetic formulation of DMT known as SPL026, has not been peer-reviewed. 

In a press release, Dr. Carol Routledge, chief medical and scientific officer at Small Pharma, said the team is “increasingly encouraged by the treatment potential” of the drug. 

“A single dose in conjunction with therapy demonstrated a rapid and robust antidepressant effect after one week. This new data shows that the antidepressant effect was sustained for six-months in two-thirds of patients who were in remission at an earlier time-point in the study.” — Routledge in a statement   

The first part of the study involved 34 patients being given the treatment during a two-and-a-half-hour clinical session with a therapist and a therapy session followed which helped participants process their experience. The second part of the study followed participants for another three months after being administered the drug, and then six more months after the study had come to an end in an assessment of its durability. 

In a joint statement, Robin Carhart-Harris PhD, director of the psychedelics division at the Weill Institute for Neurosciences at the University of California San Francisco, and Ralph Metzner distinguished professor of Neurology, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, said the study’s results suggest that the drug “can elicit a fast-acting antidepressant response that appears to be enduring in several cases.”

“Recent neuroimaging and preclinical findings imply a regenerative action with DMT and other related serotonergic agonists,” Carhart-Harris and Metzner said in the statement.

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