About 30% of individuals suffering from depression usually don’t benefit from treatment using antidepressants. This highlights the need to expand the collection of drugs available to individuals with depression. In the last few years, increasing evidence has found that psychedelic compounds such as psilocybin may be useful in the treatment of depression. Psilocybin is the active compound found in magic mushrooms that causes hallucinations when administered in large doses.
However, while researchers know the drug can relieve depression by changing the response of an individual’s brain to serotonin, they don’t know much about the process of how the drug works to help manage the condition. Two separate studies, whose findings were published in “Nature Medicine” and “The New England Journal of Medicine” may offer new insights into the psychedelic compound’s treatment mechanism.
The researchers involved in these studies carried out a randomized double-blind controlled trial that compared individuals who were using escitalopram to manage their depression with those who were using psilocybin to do so. They analyzed the patients using brain scans, discovering that there was increased connectivity in different networks in the brains of those who used psilocybin and a reduction of connections in the default-mode network.
In their report, the researchers noted that the individuals who had the largest boost in the connections between networks recorded the greatest improvements in their symptoms half a year later. On the other hand, patients who were on the escitalopram antidepressant recorded no significant changes in connectivity of other brain networks as well as the default network during a six-week period.
The study’s findings suggest that psilocybin may be ideal for individuals who don’t respond to current antidepressants.
Additionally, based on rating scales for depression, the researchers found that psilocybin had the biggest effect on patients’ overall mental well-being, with a majority of patients who were treated with the compound demonstrating a clinical response in comparison to those who were on escitalopram. The researchers also note that most patients who were on psilocybin were still in remission at six weeks in comparison to those on the antidepressant.
In their report, the researchers highlight that self-medicating using psilocybin to help manage depression is ill-advised, especially because there are a number of risk factors that if unaccounted for can cause adverse effects. However, they also add that their findings showed promise and brought them one step closer to increasing the treatment options available for individuals with depression.
As more becomes known about the way in which psychedelics work to relieve various symptoms, the formulations developed by companies such as Silo Pharma Inc. (OTCQB: SILO) are likely to find a receptive public since ample awareness will have been created beforehand.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Silo Pharma Inc. (OTCQB: SILO) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/SILO
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