New Directions for Psychedelic Therapies: Psilocybin in Neurodegenerative Disease and Chronic Illness
- 11:00 - 11:30
- Auditorium (2nd & 3rd floor)
With growing evidence on the utility of psychedelic-assisted therapies for psychiatric conditions such as major depression and substance use disorders, the field is now expanding its horizons to examine the potential impact of psychedelics for new indications. Our team has recently initiated two pilot studies that will be discussed in this presentation. The first is examining the impact of psilocybin for depression in people with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) or early-stage Alzheimer’s Disease (AD).
Neurodegenerative illnesses like AD are often comorbid with neuropsychiatric symptoms such as apathy and depressed mood that can significantly detract from quality of life. Standard antidepressant medications are not always effective in these populations, highlighting the need for novel therapies.
Similarly, a second trial is currently underway investigating the use of psilocybin in patients with post-treatment Lyme Disease, an inflammatory infectious disease characterized by persistent fatigue, pain, and cognitive difficulties. There is no known treatment for post-treatment Lyme Disease. Clinical rationale and preliminary data from these studies will be presented, followed by a broader discussion of new directions and opportunities for studying the therapeutic potentials of psychedelic-assisted treatments in other conditions and populations.