Psych Congress: MDMA-Assisted Therapy Shows Promise in Treatment for Alcohol Addiction

Summary: The first study investigating MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for alcohol use disorder (AUD) was published by United Kingdom researchers in the Journal of Psychopharmacology. After an alcohol detoxification period, participants received two MDMA-assisted psychotherapy sessions. Researchers found that “MDMA-assisted psychotherapy can be safely delivered, is well tolerated, and has the potential to enhance and intensify the psychotherapeutic processes in the treatment of patients with AUD.”

Originally appearing here.

MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for the treatment of alcohol use disorder was found to improve psychosocial functioning with no unexpected adverse events in a clinical trial conducted by London-based Awakn Life Sciences.

Results of the study were published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.

Over the course of eight weeks, 14 participants in the study received a 187.5 mg dose of MDMA at each of two sessions, with psychological support being provided before, during and after each session. Safety, tolerability, and psychological and physiological outcome measures were assessed during the trial. Alcohol use, mental health and functioning were tracked in the nine months that followed detoxification.

At the nine-month mark post-detox, participants reported consuming an average of 18.7 units of alcohol per week, down from an average of 130.6 units per week pre-detox.

Awakn said in a news release announcing results of the study that it plans to move forward with a Phase IIb study—a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial to further investigate the safety and efficacy of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for alcohol use disorder.