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Old June 12th, 2018, 07:34 AM   #1
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Psychedelics may physically alter the structure of the brain

I can testify that psychedelics including marginally cannabis indeed "changed" my perceptions of the physical world, the way things look, the way light appears, the way music sounds, amongst other changes.

Apparently, this altering of brain structure can be useful in treating depression.

Imagine that.....


Psychedelic drugs are known to produce mind-altering effects, which can lead to profound changes in consciousness. But according to a study published in the journal Cell Reports, these compounds may alter the structure of the brain in a physical sense as well.

Researchers from the University of California, Davis (UCD), found that psychedelic compounds such as LSD, DMT and MDMA, can increase the number of connections between brain cells, or neurons.

These findings are promising because they suggest that psychedelics could be used to repair the malfunctioning brain circuits observed in people with mood disorders, such as depression, anxiety, addiction and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

“We’ve known for a long time that psychedelics can profoundly impact brain function,” David Olson, an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Medicine at UCD, told Newsweek. “We now know that these functional effects are accompanied by structural changes.”

The results are especially exciting, according to Olson, because these structural changes were similar to those produced by ketamine—an anesthetic that is rapidly gaining a reputation as one of the most promising ways to rapidly treat acute depression.

Recent research has shown that drugs derived from ketamine can produce a fast-acting anti-depressant effect in people who do not respond to other treatment options. These benefits could be explained by the fact that it promotes the rewiring of connections between brain cells—an ability known as 'neural plasticity.'

One hallmark of depression and similar disorders is that tiny structures called neurites in the prefrontal cortex—a critical brain region responsible for regulating fear responses and reward—shrivel up. These neurites play an important role in brain function as they span the junctions—or synapses—between individual neurons, enabling them to communicate with each other.

In the experiments, scientists found that the psychedelics increased both the growth of neurites and the number of connections between neurons. Some compounds, such as LSD, even proved to be more potent than ketamine in promoting neurite growth. This suggests that psychedelics have the potential to reverse some of the structural changes seen in the brains of people with mood disorders.
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Old June 12th, 2018, 05:16 PM   #2
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No comments??!!??
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Old June 12th, 2018, 05:49 PM   #3
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A rose by any other name

Yes. The only real bumper crop coming out of US military involvement in wars in Afghanistan & Iraq has been our people damaged by PTSD & IEDs. If research indicates that marijuana & psychedelic compounds can alleviate or even just mask the symptoms, then it's worth working up studies - controls, trials in animals, trials in primates, trials in volunteer people - to pursue whatever positives there are to that course of treatment.

We'll also need to pin down negatives, & develop protocols for how much to treat disorders without causing new or different problems of equal or more severity than the underlying complaint. The US should take the lead in this kind of research - PTSD to date is not curable, we only have pharmacological & supportive services to try to manage the pain & stress, physical & mental.

We should also be pursuing very hard better prosthetics & vat-grown biological prosthetics - because we have a lot of amputees coming back out of the field as well. But that's a different topic.
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Old June 12th, 2018, 06:04 PM   #4
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There has been a lot of success using psilocybin in addiction that i am aware of. I have also heard about people using very small amounts of lsd as a daily enhancement. The unfortunate thing is in our instant gratification society people hear about something being "successful" and that translates to them as a magic cure. Everything in life that has any real value comes at a cost and requires work.

There is a reason why many cultures used psychedelics as a right of passage.

I have had a theory for years that the communion was some sort of psychedelic that was activated when dipped into the wine making the parish more susceptible to suggestions and influence. This internal knowledge played a huge part in why the substances were demonized in western society. That and the fact that used correctly they have the ability to open the minds that the powers that be work so hard to keep closed. Well, that and most people come to the realization that everything is connected. It is hard to convince millions of people that it is in their best interest to murder people on the otherside of the world when many of them understand the symbiotic nature of the world.
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