Issue 182

Study identifies MDMA variants that could make therapy safer

Published in the Journal of Neurochemistry, an international research team led by Harald Sitte at MedUni Vienna’s Center for Physiology and Pharmacology has identified three new variants of MDMA as promising alternatives for safer use.

According to the team, the variants – ODMA, TDMA and SeDMA – have been developed to retain the positive effects of MDMA while reducing negative effects.

The studies suggest that the variants impact structures in the brain such as serotonin and dopamine in a similar way to MDMA, but unlike MDMA, they have lower activity at certain serotonin receptors.

Study lead Harald Sitte stated: “This allows the conclusion that both the acute and long-term side effects of ODMA, TDMA and SeDMA may be lower than those of the conventional substance.”

“Since the MDMA analogues also have a weaker interaction with certain transport proteins in the body that are responsible for the absorption and excretion of drugs, the risk of interactions with other drugs could also be reduced,” added first author, Ana Sofia Alberto-Silva.



The BBC explores how a number of experts who study psychedelics have spoken out in support of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD and have sharply criticised the recent recommendations of the FDA’s Psychopharmacological Drugs Advisory Committee.

“But some are still optimistic that the treatment might be approved when the FDA delivers its final decision in August.”

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Psychiatry Online has reported that APA President Paul Appelbaum has called the development of clear guidelines by professional organizations such as APA in order to mitigate the risks of ethical improprieties associated with psychedelic therapy.

“We are going to have to regulate ourselves, and our professional organizations have a role to play in developing guidelines to help clinicians.”

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A new study has shown that LSD increases sleep duration the night after microdosing.

A new pill that slowly releases ketamine could treat people with severe depression without giving them the psychedelic side effects, reports Head Topics.

Cannabis and some psychedelic drugs may help protect the brain from aspects of aging.

A new study suggests that psychedelics produce a distinct state that blends waking behaviours with sleep-like brain waves.


Confronting the Challenges of the Psychedelic Renaissance: Insights from the ICPR Conference.

A Texas Republican is fighting to allow for therapeutic access to psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy.


MindMed has completed its meeting with the FDA supporting the advancement of LSD into pivotal trials for the treatment of adults with GAD.

Alira Health has partnered with Scottsdale Research Institute on psilocybin clinical trials funded by the State of Arizona.

atai Life Sciences has announced an update on Beckley Psytech’s Phase 1/2a trial of ELE-101 for people living with MDD.

MindBio Therapeutics has reported a sustained antidepressant response from MB22001 (LSD) in depression clinical trials.


A charity is calling on the next UK government to deliver key mental health reforms including to disability and sick pay benefits, as well as to help people with mental health problems back into work.

Experts have urged incoming European leaders to make the European Union a healthcare powerhouse again, discussing how the European Commission could steer the bloc’s role in tackling mounting health challenges.