Dr. Ben Sessa, MBBS, BSc, MRCPsych

Chief Medical Officer, Awakn Life Sciences

Dr Ben Sessa is chief medical officer at Awakn Life Sciences, a biotechnology company with clinical operations researching, developing, and delivering psychedelic medicine to treat addiction.

As a consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist, Dr Sessa has worked with young people and adults in the field of addictions and trauma-related psychiatry for over 20 years. He has a particular interest in the developmental trajectory from child maltreatment to adult mental health disorders, including adult addictions. Dr Sessa’s joint interests in psychotherapy, pharmacology and trauma have led him towards researching the subject of drug-assisted psychotherapy using psychedelic adjuncts.

Over the last 15 years, Dr Sessa has been part of many ground-breaking scientific and clinical studies administering psychedelic compounds to augment psychotherapy. He has recently completed research with Imperial College London exploring the world’s first MDMA-assisted therapy trial for the treatment of Alcohol Use Disorder and continues to carry out research in this area. Dr Sessa is also an experienced medical cannabis prescriber. Dr Sessa is widely published in the academic and popular press in respect of the field of medical psychedelics. He has written several academic books, notably The Psychedelic Renaissance (2012/2017).

Dr Sessa is a trained MDMA and psilocybin therapist and has delivered keynote talks at international conferences in the psychedelic community for 15+ years.