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May 18, 2016 09:23 PM EDT

Severe Depression Treatment: Magic Mushrooms Found To Be Effective?

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Researchers from Imperial College London found that an ingredient in psychedelic magic mushrooms could help improve severe depression symptoms. Psilocybin, the active ingredient in magic mushrooms was administrered orally to clinically depressed patients. It was found to be safe and effective.

Magic Mushrooms Clinical Trial Found Psilocybin Effective

In the clinical trial, a dozen subjects with history of clinical depression were given an oral dose of psilocybin, a component found in magic mushrooms. These subjects have severe depression and do not respond to common medication including electroconvulsive therapy and selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs).

The Imperial College London researchers found that after a week of oral psilocybin, the subjects had improved their signs of clinical depression after a week, Scientific American reported. After three months, five out of 12 subjects did not experience the returning symptoms of their severe depression. The results of the study were published in the journal Lancet Psychiatry.


Psilocybin in Magic Mushrooms Targeted Brain Receptors

The researchers say that the psilocybin may have targeted the brain receptors responsible for the Default Mode Network, Telegraph noted. The Default Mode Network is found to be active in the brain regions of those with severe depression. However, it may also be caused by the psychedelic effects of psilocybin in magic mushrooms too.

Clinical Trials With No Placebo Control Proves Little

According to The Guardian, the clinical trial did not have subjects take placebo so researchers do not have basis of comparison for those who did not get psilocybin magic mushrooms. The researchers reasoned out that lack of funds prevented them from conducting a full trial. More research and funding are needed to know the effects of psilocybin in magic mushrooms.

Do you think it is worthy to explore the effects of psilocybin in magic mushrooms? Do you think the study is a scientific breakthrough? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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