MAPS Email Newsletter:
Three More Subjects Treated;
Indiegogo Campaign Launches on Veterans Day
November 15, 2013
I’m excited to bring you the November 2013 edition of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) Email Newsletter. Here you’ll find the latest news about experimental treatments in our international MDMA and ibogaine research programs, the latest chapter in our ongoing struggle to start medical marijuana research, and how supporters like you are helping explain the risks and explore the benefits of psychedelics and marijuana for science, medicine, and spirituality.
This Veterans Day, we launched our Indiegogo campaign to help complete our crucial study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for U.S. veterans, firefighters, and police officers with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Supporting this study—and sharing it with friends and family—is our chance to raise awareness about PTSD while providing vital funding for research that is transforming lives.
Here are more highlights from this edition:
- The protocol for our FDA and IRB-approved study of marijuana for symptoms of PTSD in veterans is resubmitted to the Department of Health and Human Services
- The 10th subject is enrolled in our ongoing observational study of ibogaine-assisted therapy for opiate addiction in New Zealand
- HuffPost Live talks to MAPS Executive Director Rick Doblin, PhD, and VICE Science Editor Hamilton Morris about the current state of research chemicals and how to promote harm reduction at clubs and festivals
- The paper for our completed Swiss study of LSD-assisted psychotherapy for anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness is resubmitted to a scientific journal
Also keep an eye out next month for the Winter 2013 edition of the MAPS Bulletin, featuring our Annual Financial Report, in-depth reports from our psychedelic harm reduction program, and much more.
As public support increases for psychedelic and medical marijuana research, the mood is shifting from one of recovery to one of growth and sustainability. Thank you for your support in bringing us this far—even bigger changes are right around the corner.
MAPS Director of Communications and Marketing
- U.S. Veterans: 14th Subject Treated
- Israel: Third Subject Enrolled, First and Second Subject Complete 2-Month Follow-Ups
- Boulder: Second and Third Subjects Treated
- Marijuana for PTSD Protocol Resubmitted to HHS; Researchers Await Response
- Paper Resubmitted to Scientific Journal with Responses to Reviewer Comments
- New Zealand: 10th Subject Enrolled
- Raise Awareness and Help Complete Vital Research for Veterans with PTSD on Indiegogo
- New Sustainers Program Makes Your Monthly Gift Easy
fPost Live, Playboy, SBS, and more…
- Acid Dreams: The Complete Social History of LSD by Martin Lee and Bruce Shlain
- Smoke Signals: A Social History of Marijuana by Martin Lee
- Smoke Signals and Acid Dreams: An Evening with Martin Lee: November 22, Santa Cruz, CA
- Treating Trauma: Richard Rockefeller and Larry Brilliant at the Commonwealth Club: December 9, San Francisco, CA
- Exile Nation and Neurons to Nirvana Creators Launch Documentary Series on Trauma and Healing
Treating PTSD with MDMA-Assisted Therapy
Marijuana for PTSD in Veterans of War
LSD-Assisted Therapy for Anxiety
Ibogaine-Assisted Therapy for Drug Addiction
We need your help to transform the lives of veterans and others suffering from PTSD
TREATING PTSD WITH MDMA-ASSISTED PSYCHOTHERAPY
On November 8, 2013, the 14th subject began treatment in our ongoing study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for 24 U.S. veterans, firefighters, and police officers with service-related PTSD. This subject was enrolled on November 6. (Note: We are now subtracting dropouts from the total number of subjects treated to more accurately reflect study progress.) Twelve subjects have completed their one-month follow-up interview, two subjects are currently being treated, and two have dropped out. One subject dropped out following a successful treatment, and the other was randomly assigned to the low dose (30 mg) condition and felt the experience was too emotionally difficult. Seven subjects have completed the study following their one-year follow-up. Learn more… | Help complete this study on Indiegogo…
$1,395,000 estimated study cost • $881,000 raised • $513,000 still needed
2. Israel: Third Subject Enrolled, First and Second Subject Complete 2-Month Follow-Ups
On October 30, 2013, the third subject was enrolled in our ongoing Israeli study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for 10 subjects with chronic, treatment-resistant PTSD. Two-month follow-up evaluations were conducted for the first two subjects on September 17 and October 3. This third subject will enable our third (of three) co-therapist team to start treating subjects. Goals for this study include (1) gathering evidence for the safety and effectiveness of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for subjects with PTSD mostly related to war and terrorism, (2) comparing the effectiveness of different doses of MDMA for therapy and double-blind, (3) working in direct association with the Israeli Ministry of Health, and (4) exploring the use of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in other cultural contexts. Learn more…
$463,000 estimated study cost • $39,000 raised • $423,000 still needed
MDMA-assisted psychotherapy researchers Michael Mithoefer, MD, and Annie Mithoefer, BSN, lead a sold out workshop at Psychedelic Science 2013. Watch videos from Psychedelic Science 2013.
On October 4 and 9, 2013, the second and third subjects were treated in our ongoing Boulder, Colorado, study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for 17 subjects with PTSD. The second and third subjects are both women suffering from chronic, treatment-resistant PTSD as a result of sexual abuse. All subjects will receive MDMA-assisted psychotherapy sessions from one of our therapist/intern teams. Learn more...
$582,000 estimated study cost • $193,000 raised • $389,000 still needed
Learn more about MDMA-assisted psychotherapy on or at mdmaptsd.org.
MARIJUANA FOR PTSD IN VETERANS OF WAR
FDA and IRB say yes—will NIDA agree?
On October 24, 2013, MAPS resubmitted to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services the protocol for our Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Institutional Review Board (IRB)-approved study of marijuana for symptoms of PTSD in 50 U.S. veterans with chronic, treatment-resistant PTSD. Currently, the National Institute on Drug Abuse holds a monopoly on the supply of marijuana for research in the U.S. Under current federal policies, reviewers from the Public Health Service (PHS, a division of the Department of Health and Human Services/HHS) must approve all privately funded research seeking to use NIDA marijuana. The FDA approved the protocol in April 2011, but HHS reviewers unanimously rejected the protocol in September 2011, preventing the study from going forward. At the time of the HHS rejection, the study had not yet been approved by an IRB.
In October 2012, the IRB at the University of Arizona approved the study protocol. The IRB accepted all the core elements of our design, added several safety measures and procedures, and rejected HHS’ critiques of the protocol design. We are requesting that HHS agree to sell MAPS the marijuana needed for the study, as well as to abandon the PHS review process entirely, which exists only for marijuana and not for research with any other drug. MAPS is also working with other groups on a Congressional Sign-On letter to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius urging her to eliminate the PHS review and require NIDA to sell marijuana to sponsors of all protocols that obtain approval from FDA, IRB, DEA and relevant state authorities. Cover letter to HHS | Learn more…
$10,000 needed for protocol development and approval / $10,000 raised
LSD-ASSISTED PSYCHOTHERAPY FOR ANXIETY
On November 14, 2013, the results of our completed study of LSD-assisted psychotherapy for anxiety associated with life-threatening illness were resubmitted for publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. The paper, which reports on the first study of the therapeutic use of LSD in over 40 years, was originally submitted to the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease on August 9. On October 8, reviewers responded with comments requesting additional references along with a discussion of secondary outcome measures collected in the study related to quality of life and additional psychological symptoms. We’re cautiously optimistic that the paper will be accepted for publication without requiring further changes. Learn more…
This study is complete and has been fully funded
IBOGAINE-ASSISTED THERAPY FOR DRUG ADDICTION
On September 20, 2013, the 10th subject was enrolled in our ongoing observational study of ibogaine-assisted treatment for opioid dependence in New Zealand. In this study, Principal Investigator Geoff Noller, Ph.D., is collecting follow-up data from up to 30 subjects undergoing treatment at an independent ibogaine center in New Zealand. Learn more…
On Veterans Day, November 11, we launched our Indiegogo campaign to help complete our ongoing study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for 24 U.S. veterans, firefighters, and police officers with service-related PTSD. As of this announcement, 68 funders have already contributed $2,506 for this study, with 47 days to go. Through contributions from individuals and private foundations, we have already raised almost $900,000 for this study, almost two-thirds of the total estimated study cost of $1.4 million, with just $500,000 left to raise to complete this study. We are seeking to raise $50,000 of the remaining cost of this study through this campaign as part of our larger efforts to enable a wider group of people to participate in and raise awareness about this historic study, which can motivate the U.S. Department of Defense and Veterans Administration to get more involved. Learn more…
In the last month, 163 people gave $13,646 to gather evidence and educate the public about the potential therapeutic benefits of psychedelics. We are grateful to those who were able and willing to make large gifts: Trammell Crow gave $5,000, and Linda Chinn gave $1,000, in support of our study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD in veterans, police, and firefighters. Google matched Daniel Todd Cohen’s gift of $1,000 in general support. Jonathon Shumen and Malachi Prince both gave $500 in unrestricted gifts. 158 additional supporters gave between $5 and $250, many of these gifts are given every month by credit card through our Sustainers program.
The Sustainers program is easy to set up: just visit maps.org/donate, then choose “Make this a recurring donation.” Each month, your card is charged and you receive a short email thank you; then you’ll receive an annual receipt in January summarizing the amount you gave in the previous year. Questions? Need to make changes to your account? Visit maps.org, write to email@example.com, or call (831) 429-6362.
MAPS also is a fiscal sponsor to groups aligned with our Mission, Vision, and Values. Last month, 46 supporters gave $1,553 for Bluelight.ru, an online forum about psychedelics and other drugs focused on harm reduction and public education.
PRESS RELEASE: Smoke Signals and Acid Dreams: An Evening with Martin Lee and MAPS in Santa Cruz | view
MAPS | November 5, 2013
Opposing Views: Major Committees Approve Study To Give MDMA To Autistic Adults With Social Anxiety | view
Sarah Rae Fruchtnicht | October 21, 2013
SBS (Australia): Interview with PTSD Survivor Rachel Hope | view
SBS | November 8, 2013
HuffPost Live: Let’s Get Synthetic | view
Host: Ricky Camilleri | October 18, 2013
HuffPost Live: Marijuana Is Helping Our Vets Cope With War | view
Josh Zepps | November 11, 2013
Playboy: Molly is the New Club Drug, But What’s In It? | view
Frank Owen & Lera Gavin | October 20, 2013
Acid Dreams: The Complete Social History of LSD
by Martin Lee and Bruce Shlain
384 pages | Published by Grove Press
In Acid Dreams, authors Martin Lee and Bruce Shlain use new information obtained through the Freedom of Information Act to reveal how the CIA became obsessed with LSD during the Cold War. What follows is one of the more bizarre episodes in the covert history of U.S. intelligence as the search for a “truth drug” started to look like a blockbuster spy action thriller.
$15.00 | Now available
Smoke Signals: A Social History of Marijuana
by Martin Lee
528 pages | Published by Scribner
Martin Lee, bestselling author of Acid Dreams, tells the great American pot story—a panoramic, character-driven saga that examines the medical, recreational, scientific, and economic dimensions of the world’s most controversial plant. Colorful, illuminating, and irreverent, this book is a fascinating read for recreational users, patients, students, doctors, musicians, accountants, Baby Boomers and their kids, and anyone who has ever wondered about the secret life of this ubiquitous herb.
$13.00 | Now available
This fall, MAPS participated in five conferences related to the science, policy, and spirituality of psychedelics and marijuana: Science & Nonduality (San Jose, CA), Bioneers (San Rafael, CA), Horizons: Perspectives on Psychedelics (NYC), the International Drug Policy Reform Conference (Denver, CO), and the Spirit Plant Medicine Conference (Vancouver, Canada). We also hosted benefit dinners in Boulder, Colorado, and New York City. Having reached thousands of curious people, and shared insights from diverse perspectives ranging from philosophy of science to environmental activism and drug policy reform, we are grateful for your attendance and support. Thank you!
Join MAPS and Martin Lee, renowned author of Acid Dreams and Smoke Signals, as he explores the relationship between cannabis therapeutics and the psychedelic experience, focusing on the healing potential of cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive component of the marijuana plant, in “From LSD to CBD: A Holistic Healing Journey.”
Could MDMA effectively treat—maybe even cure—post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD)? Dr. Rockefeller says yes—or at least a very strong maybe. What are the possible downsides to this research and what safeguards should be in place to govern it? Is this too good to be true? Join a conversation about the frontiers of brain science and potential for soothing the human condition. Tickets available now.
See our Events Calendar for more!
The Phoenix Project is a new documentary series that explores the pervasive effect of trauma in our culture. The film will follow the life stories of people who have undergone massive trauma at one point in their lives and emerged, after a long healing process, as recovered individuals engaged in art, community, and social justice. Along with these featured stories, the series will also explore healing modalities and techniques that have proved effective for those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other ailments. View the Call for Stories…
Looking for more ways to get involved? Check out our Student Resources page!