Psychedelic Science Expands Through Collaboration
New publication in Nature Medicine, expansion of investigator-initiated trials, and new opportunities to contribute
October 29, 2021
Dear friends and supporters,
Our team is still seeking research volunteers for Phase 3 clinical trials of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD. Trials are recruiting in Charleston, South Carolina; Boulder, Colorado; Fort Collins, Colorado; Boston, Massachusetts; Los Angeles, California; New York, New York; Madison, Wisconsin; San Francisco, California; and Tel Aviv, Israel. Volunteers should apply at mdmaptsd.org. Volunteers will help contribute to scientific knowledge and will help us better understand if MDMA-assisted therapy works for treatment of PTSD. MAPS conducts clinical trials under the guidance and regulations of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in collaboration with federal regulators, including the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). To learn more about our clinical trials or apply to be a study participant, visit our website.
Call for papers! MAPS and MAPS Public Benefit Corporation (MAPS PBC) staff are serving as guest editors for a Special Issue in Frontiers in Psychiatry, “MDMA-Assisted Therapy for Treatment of PTSD and Beyond.” We are inviting submissions from graduate students, independent researchers, or others in the scientific field who are already working on research in this area or would like to use this as an opportunity to initiate a research project and submit their findings. The deadline for abstract submissions is February 28, 2022. Submit your paper using this link.
Given the unique experiential nature of psychedelic therapies, study blinding via placebo has long been a matter of particular concern for researchers seeking to evaluate the effectiveness of any psychedelic intervention (Burke et al., 2021). Some are skeptical of trial designs, analyses of adverse effects, and cost-effectiveness of MDMA-assisted therapy compared to other first-line interventions (Halvorsen et al., 2021). Nature Medicine published these critiques alongside a response letter from researchers Jennifer Mitchell, Ph.D., Allison Coker, Ph.D., and Berra Yazar-Klosinski, Ph.D., all of whom served as authors of the peer-reviewed journal article reporting on the results.
On October 13, we published a new page for information regarding participant safety in psychedelic therapy. All of our stakeholders are committed to contributing to a system that delivers ethical care within MAPS-sponsored study protocols. We recognize that individuals have been harmed by misconduct in therapy, including psychedelic-assisted therapy, and we embrace our obligation to protect participant safety in MAPS-sponsored studies and the safety of others who are associated with our programs. Please bookmark this new page for more information as it develops.
We take seriously our obligation to ethically and thoroughly review allegations of misconduct related to MAPS-sponsored studies, MAPS staff, MAPS PBC staff, and our collaborators. In service of these commitments, we are examining, carefully developing, and implementing policies and practices to prevent, reasonably detect, and thoroughly respond to allegations of misconduct. You can review the carefully-considered practices in place today, and as they develop, by reading the new page.
The MAPS Public Benefit Corporation (MAPS PBC) investigator-initiated trial (IIT) program is designed to create an ever-growing network of qualified clinicians whose passion and innovative questioning help to inspire new possibilities within the path to expanding patient access and the conditions that MDMA-assisted therapy may possibly treat.. Investigator-initiated trials (IITs) by design are unique clinical trials sponsored and implemented by clinicians to investigate a specific research question they have interest in furthering within their field. MAPS PBC does advise but does not prescribe on IIT study designs. Priority is given to projects that address organizational strategic indications, questions of patient access, and geographic regions of interest. As part of your IIT submission, please provide as much detail about your research concept as possible in order to ensure effective evaluation. Please note MAPS PBC is only accepting IIT submissions for the compound MDMA at this time. Learn more about our investigator-initiated trials.
The fall MDMA Therapy Training cohort is now underway and includes 520 trainees in a 100-hour online program, running through December 18. So far this year we’ve granted $900,000 in 231 Health Equity Scholarships and increased the racial diversity of program trainees immensely. To learn more about becoming a psychedelic therapist, visit the MAPS PBC website
National Estate Planning Awareness Week happens every October! We are grateful to our many supporters who have chosen to leave a portion of their estate to MAPS. We hope you’ll consider doing the same by using the tools created by our partner, FreeWill. FreeWill is a free online resource that guides you through the process of creating a legally valid will in just 20 minutes or less. Start your FreeWill by clicking here. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This Veterans Day, on November 11, we are thanking United States Veterans for their service and sacrifice. MAPS is committed to fighting for better access to psychedelic therapies that can help Veterans who are struggling to heal from the wounds of service. Veterans experience higher rates of PTSD and traumatic brain injury (TBI) compared to the rest of the population due to the nature of their training and deployment. We’re proud to introduce you to Veterans Exploring Treatment Solutions (VETS), a non-profit organization that connects veterans to meaningful treatment in the form of psychedelic therapies. We’re working towards a world where Veterans can access alternative treatment solutions at home, in the country they served.
In this edition of the MAPS Newsletter, you’ll also learn:
- You can vote for Rick Doblin, Ph.D., MAPS Founder and Executive Director, for Unsung Hero of the Year, Public Figure of the Year for the 1st Annual Microdose Awards as part of Wonderland Miami. Public voting is open until November 1!
- MAPS, MAPS PBC, and MAPS Europe are hiring!
- Save the date: MAPS is hosting Psychedelic Science 2023/Psychedelic City, the fourth in a series of Psychedelic Science conferences to take place from June 18-25, 2023, in Denver, Colorado. Previous Psychedelic Science conferences took place in 2010, 2013, and 2017, with the 2017 conference being the world’s largest psychedelic conference ever with about 3,000 participants. We’re anticipating 10,000 people at Psychedelic Science 2023/Psychedelic City
Journalist Michael Pollan, author of How to Change Your Mind and many other New York Times best sellers, is collaborating with the UC Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics on The Microdose, a new twice-weekly psychedelic newsletter. Learn more about the newsletter and subscribe today.
Thank you for reading, and be sure to forward the MAPS Newsletter to a friend!
MAPS Web and Email Marketing Associate
Treating PTSD with MDMA-Assisted Therapy
Investigator-Initiated Trials: First Participant Enrolled in The Single-Site, Open-Label Phase 2 Study of MDMA-Assisted Therapy for U.S. Military Veterans with Combat-Related, Refractory PTSD
Investigator-Initiated Trials: Now Recruiting: A Phase 2 Open-Label Treatment Development Study of MDMA-Assisted Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) for PTSD
Investigator-Initiated Trials: Now Recruiting: A Phase 1 Study on the Effects of MDMA on Prefrontal and Amygdala Activation in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder
Investigator-Initiated Trials: Now Enrolling: The Influence of MDMA on the Reward Circuits in the Human Brain of Healthy Individuals
MAPS in the Media
- Participant Safety in Psychedelic Therapy
- NBC News: California Moves Closer to Decriminalizing Psychedelic Drugs
- Oprah: Alternative Mental Health Therapies
- Matters Arising: MAPS’ Pivotal Phase 3 Trial Advances Scientific Discourse in Nature Medicine
- Medium: Psychedelic Medicine Comes to the VA
- PsyPost: MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy Associated With Sleep Improvements Among PTSD Patients
- Truffle Report: Ensuring Equity in Psychedelic Science and Businesses
- Technology Networks: MDMA for Traumatic Brain Injury To Be Studied in $1.5 Million Partnership
Browse our Event Calendar page for more opportunities.
Wonderland: Miami, November 8-9, 2021, Miami, Florida
Fluence: Access and Inclusion in Psychedelic Treatment Webinar Series, September 23 – December 9, 2021
Aware: Glimpses of Consciousness, November 10, 2021, Online
SSDP Imperial presents: The Wonders of MDMA-Assisted Therapy, November 22, 2021, South Kensington, London, UK
Horizons: Perspectives on Psychedelics, December 1-5, 2021, New York, New York
Psychedelic Science 2023, June 18-25, 2023, Denver, Colorado
Participate in Psychedelic Research
MDMA Studies Sponsored by MAPS
MAPS sponsors clinical trials around the world that offer volunteers the opportunity to participate in our research studies. Our studies have strict enrollment criteria based on the goal of the study and the condition the study is investigating.
Phase 3 MDMA/PTSD trial participant enrollment is now open. Please bookmark our Participate in Research page and check it frequently for updates.
Newly Created Psychedelic Research Department: Transdisciplinary Center for Research in Psychoactive Substances at University of Wisconsin-Madison
New Masters of Science Program: Psychoactive Pharmaceutical Investigation at University of Wisconsin-Madison
Thank you to Dr. Bronner’s for their company’s support of the MAPS Newsletter!