The research will study how psilocybin can be used to treat a range of health issues, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression. Buy golden teacher mushrooms
The $17 billion state budget package includes a $5 million provision for the first controlled clinical trials for whole mushroom psilocybin – also known as “magic mushrooms.”
Backers hope the research will one day be used to get whole-mushroom psilocybin approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The budget provision also creates a psilocybin research advisory council that includes a military veteran, an Arizona law enforcement officer and a university professor who specializes in clinical research or psychedelic studies. They will be responsible for making recommendations to the governor and state legislature.
Using whole mushroom psilocybin is what will make these trials different, since previous clinical trials have used synthetic single molecule psilocybin, which is significantly chemically different from the substance found in whole mushrooms.
Sisley, along with advocates in the legislature including Republicans Rep. Kevin Payne and Sen. T.J. Shope and Democratic Reps. Jennifer Longdon and Stacey Travers, originally worked together on House Bill 2486, which contained similar provisions for psilocybin research as the budget bill, but with $30 million in funding. That bill died after failing to secure a committee hearing.
Sisley told the Arizona Mirror that she only learned a few weeks ago that legislators were working to incorporate the bill into the state budget.
She said she’s not discouraged that the funding was cut from the original $30 million that was sought, since the budget also funds many other worthy causes. While the original amount would have funded phase I, II and III clinical trials, she said she is hopeful the $5 million will fund at least one phase I trial, which will give her research some momentum to possibly garner funding from another source.
Sisley has seen firsthand the benefits of taking psilocybin for people dealing with addiction and trauma, but as a scientist, she still remains skeptical.
“I couldn’t believe how many police officers and firefighters came to me and said they’ve had PTSD for years and this was the only thing that helped,” Sisley said of psilocybin assisted therapy.
Some of the biggest advocates of psilocybin therapy are military veterans, but all those who wish to take the drug right now, even for therapeutic purposes, must do so underground because it’s illegal in Arizona, as it is in most other states. Cloud walker mushrooms
“The GOP has often fought for medical freedom, opposing FDA overregulation and pushing for ‘Right-to-try’ laws,” Payne said in a statement. “Arizonans, especially veterans, deserve alternatives to dangerous and addictive prescriptions. This bill will help.”
The bill requires that the nonprofits or universities that are awarded the grants use veterans, first responders, frontline health care workers and people from underserved communities as trial participants.
“This bill will place Arizona at the forefront of psilocybin research,” Shope said in the statement. “We owe it to our veterans to find ways for them to live healthy normal lives”
The psilocybin allocation in the budget bill is set to provide funding for competitive research grants for phase I, II and III clinical trials of whole-mushroom psilocybin that could be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat mental health conditions including: PTSD, long COVID-19, depression, anxiety disorders, end-of-life distress, OCD, substance abuse and addiction disorders, eating disorders, chronic pain, inflammatory disorders, autoimmune disorders, seizure disorders and other degenerative disorders.
The budget provision also creates a psilocybin research advisory council that would have to include: one member who has a federal license to study psychedelics; a military veteran; an Arizona law enforcement officer and a professor or researcher from a university under the jurisdiction of the Arizona Board of Regents who specializes in clinical research or psychedelic studies.
The advisory council would also be charged with making recommendations to the governor, speaker of the state House, the president of the Senate and Department on Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy, based on current federal and state research policy.
The Scottsdale Research Institute, where Sisley works, plans to apply for a grant, which must be awarded by Feb. 1, 2024. Her organization is already growing the kinds of mushrooms that will be used in the trials and has a 10-year history of conducting schedule I drug trials, Sisley said, so she believes the Institute has a good chance of being awarded a grant.