ANCHOR LEAD: THE IS AN OPTIMAL DOSE OF THE HALLUCINOGENIC DRUG PSILOCYBIN, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Psilocybin has earned a reputation in our culture as a street drug, but has been used for centuries by other cultures in spirituality rituals. Now research by Roland Griffiths and colleagues at Johns Hopkins has demonstrated that there is a dose at which the likelihood of producing spiritual experiences is maximized.
GRIFFITHS: By looking at a range of psilocybin doses, we could find a sweet spot in which the positive persistent effects were maximized while the adverse effects, which are generally anxiety and fear that can emerge after taking psilocybin, can be minimized. Turns out that you don't want to push the dose up to maximum levels because as you do that, you get much greater increases in fear and anxiety. :27
Griffiths says knowing the optimal dose helps researchers design clinical trials in which the drug may be used beneficially, such as ongoing studies at Johns Hopkins and elsewhere in smoking cessation. At Johns Hopkins, I'm Elizabeth Tracey.