The Laboratory for Integrative Psychiatry was founded in 2008. Our clinician-scientists focus on the use, abuse, and effects of these drugs. Research on hallucinogens may unlock important new treatments.
Our studies include:
- The cognitive and general health of religious users of naturally-occurring psychoactive substances. We completed the only such study with members of the Native American Church, whose peyote sacrament contains mescaline. We also published the only evaluation to-date of American members of the Santo Daime Church, whose ayahuasca (“Daime”) sacrament contains DMT (dimethyltryptamine). Our research found no long term harms.
- The use of psilocybin and LSD in treating cluster headache, the most painful headache disorder. Our work includes the discovery (and patent) of the use of non-hallucinogenic 2-bromo-LSD for cluster headache.
- The absence of functional neurocognitive impairments in almost-completely exclusive users of MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine, “ecstasy”).
- Combinations of medication and therapy: for example, the evaluation of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy to treat anxiety associated with advanced stage cancer.