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Persisting Effects of Psilocybin

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT02971605
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : November 23, 2016
Last Update Posted : August 31, 2018
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Johns Hopkins University

Brief Summary:
The proposed pilot study will assess whether ingestion of a classic hallucinogen (psilocybin) leads to changes in emotion processing and neural circuitry that may predict repeated self-administration of this drug and underlie an atypical mechanism of abuse liability, which may vitally contribute to the understanding of the potential for abuse and the underlying mechanisms supporting abuse of classic hallucinogens.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Healthy Drug: Psilocybin Phase 1 Phase 2

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 12 participants
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Basic Science
Official Title: Measurement of Persisting Changes in Emotional Brain Functioning Produced by Psilocybin
Actual Study Start Date : July 1, 2017
Actual Primary Completion Date : August 21, 2018
Actual Study Completion Date : August 21, 2018

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: Psilocybin
Participants will be administered a 25 mg/70 kg dose of psilocybin
Drug: Psilocybin
25 mg/70 kg Psilocybin

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Measures [ Time Frame: 1 day pre, 1 week post, and 1 month post session ]
    Measures change in activity at rest and during the performance of neuropsychological tasks

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Longitudinal emotion and mood questionnaires [ Time Frame: 1 day pre, 1 week post, and 1 month post session ]
    These questionnaires probe emotional functioning and mood state

  2. Emotional functioning tasks [ Time Frame: 1 day pre, 1 week post, and 1 month post session ]
    These tasks measure emotional responding that may be altered by psilocybin.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 45 Years   (Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Have given written informed consent
  • Have at least a high-school level of education or equivalent, and be fluent in English
  • Be healthy and psychologically stable as determined by screening for medical and psychiatric problems via a personal interview, a medical questionnaire, a physical examination, an electrocardiogram (ECG), and routine medical blood and urinalysis laboratory tests
  • Agree to consume approximately the same amount of caffeine-containing beverage (e.g., coffee, tea) that he/she consumes on a usual morning, before arriving at the research unit on the morning of the drug session day. If the participant does not routinely consume caffeinated beverages, he/she must agree not to do so on the session day.
  • Agree to refrain from using any psychoactive drugs, including alcoholic beverages and nicotine, within 24 hours of each drug administration. The exception is caffeine.
  • Agree not to take any "as needed" medications on the mornings of drug sessions
  • Agree not to take sildenafil (Viagra®), tadalafil, or similar medications within 72 hours of each drug administration.
  • Agree that for one week before each drug session, he/she will refrain from taking any nonprescription medication, nutritional supplement, or herbal supplement except when approved by the study investigators. Exceptions will be evaluated by the study investigators and will include acetaminophen, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, and common doses of vitamins and minerals.
  • Have limited lifetime use of hallucinogens

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Women who are pregnant (as indicated by a positive urine pregnancy test assessed at intake and before each drug session) or nursing; women who are of child-bearing potential and sexually active who are not practicing an effective means of birth control.
  • Cardiovascular conditions: coronary artery disease, stroke, angina, uncontrolled hypertension, a clinically significant ECG abnormality (e.g., atrial fibrilation), artificial heart valve, or stroke in the past year
  • Epilepsy with history of seizures
  • Insulin-dependent diabetes; if taking oral hypoglycemic agent, then no history of hypoglycemia
  • Currently taking psychoactive prescription medication on a regular (e.g., daily) basis
  • Currently taking on a regular (e.g., daily) basis any medications having a primary centrally-acting serotonergic effect, including mono-amine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). For individuals who have intermittent or "as needed" use of such medications, psilocybin sessions will not be conducted until at least 5 half-lives of the agent have elapsed after the last dose.
  • More than 20% outside the upper or lower range of ideal body weight according to Metropolitan Life height and weight table
  • Current or past history of meeting Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5) criteria for schizophrenia spectrum or other psychotic disorders (except substance/medication-induced or due to another medical condition), or Bipolar I or II Disorder
  • Current or past history within the last 5 years of meeting DSM-5 criteria for a moderate or severe alcohol or drug use disorder (excluding caffeine and nicotine)
  • Have a first or second-degree relative with schizophrenia spectrum or other psychotic disorders (except substance/medication-induced or due to another medical condition), or Bipolar I or II Disorder
  • Has a psychiatric condition judged to be incompatible with establishment of rapport or safe exposure to psilocybin
  • Head trauma
  • Claustrophobia incompatible with scanning
  • Cardiac pacemaker
  • Implanted cardiac defibrillator
  • Aneurysm brain clip
  • Inner ear implant
  • Prior history as a metal worker and/or certain metallic objects in the body -- must complete magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) screening form and be approved by MRI technologist before each scan

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT02971605

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United States, Maryland
Behavioral Pharmacology Research Unit, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center
Baltimore, Maryland, United States, 21224
Sponsors and Collaborators
Johns Hopkins University
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
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Principal Investigator: Frederick S Barrett, PhD Johns Hopkins University

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Responsible Party: Johns Hopkins University Identifier: NCT02971605     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: IRB00102081
R03DA042336 ( U.S. NIH Grant/Contract )
First Posted: November 23, 2016    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: August 31, 2018
Last Verified: August 2018
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: Yes
Plan Description: Anonymized data will be shared with qualified scientists upon request.

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Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Drug Product: Yes
Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Device Product: No

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Physiological Effects of Drugs
Psychotropic Drugs