A psychedelic drug that gives trips lasting half an hour improves the symptoms of moderate to severe depression for up to six months, early trial results suggest.
Biotechnology company Small Pharma announced the results of its phase 2a clinical trials of the effects of a pharmaceutical-grade formulation of Dimethyltryptamine (SPL026) on major depressive disorder, simply referred to as depression.
The drug is a powerful hallucinogenic found in several plants and is the psychoactive compound found in ayahuasca, a compound used in shamanic rituals in South America.
In the study, 34 patients were given the drug during a clinical session with supportive therapy.
The individual sessions lasted less than two-and-a-half hours, and included a preparation session with a therapist, a psychedelic experience after administering the drug (where the therapist was present) lasting less than 30 minutes, and a therapy session to help patients process their trip.