Yes you read that right, the psychedelic substance derived from magic were approved by an internal review board at Nova, a biotechnology company, to be tested on autistic/fragile x (test group) and typical children (control group) under the age of 5.
This study’s aim is to recruit 300 participants from US and Canada for a large observational study to study the gut biome (feces), immune response and serotonin activity. This is based on the theory that the gut is responsible for “behavioral symptoms.” This will be tested after given a psilocybin based medication, which is derived from psychedelic mushrooms.
There will be 200 participants who are autistic and have fragile x syndrome and 100 neurotypical children. All participants will be under the age of 5. Each participant will be giving a cheek, urine, finger blood prick, and feces samples. The informed consent would be interesting to obtain as as a parent, I would never consent my children to undergo this, especially under 5 years of age.
This study has not been done yet, it has only been approved. And since it’s by a private company, not much anyone can do besides spreading awareness on why this is very wrong. These drugs cannot change genetics, therefore cannot make an autistic child not autistic or a child with fragile x syndrome not have fragile x.
Update on the study: This study has not been approved by Health Canada. They are contacting the company to remind them about regulations. More to come.
What is Psilocybin?
Psilocybin is the hallucinogenic substance that is ingested from certain mushrooms that grow in regions of Europe, South America, Mexico and the United States. Mushroom containing psilocybin are known as “magic mushrooms.”
This drug works by activating serotonin receptors most often in the prefrontal cortex. This is the part of the brain that affects mood, cognition and perception. Hallucinogens work in other parts of the brain that affect arousal and panic responses too. Psilocybin does not always cause active visual or auditor hallucinations. It can distort how some people who use the drugs perceive objects and people already in their environment.
After the mushroom is ingested, the gut absorbs psilocybin, the body converts it to psilocyn. The hallucinogenic effects of psilocybin occurs within 30 minutes of eating the mushroom and can last 4 to 6 hours.
Potency of the mushroom depends on :
- species of the mushroom
- growing conditions
- harvest period
- whether a person ate them fresh or dried.
What the Science Says
According to the United Nations 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances, psilocybin is a Schedule 1 controlled substance. This means there is NO LEGITIMATE MEDICAL PURPOSE. It has a high potential for abuse.
When this drug is used, it produces the feelings of euphoria and sensory distortion. This is very similar to the effects of LSD.
There are researchers at John’s Hopkins Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research published a study in 2006 on the safety and effects of psilocybin. According to this study, these mushrooms induce a mystical and spiritual experience. This is identical to what people have been reporting for centuries. The researchers reported a change ini behavior and attitude that can last several months.
It does this by mimicking the effect4s of serotonin on brain receptors. This is the same as other hallucinogens. The area in the brain where this happens is unknown.
“A vast gap exists between what we know of these drugs-mostly from descriptive anthropology-and what we believe we can understand using modern clinical pharmacology techniques,” says study leader Roland Griffiths, Ph.D., a professor with Hopkins’ departments of Neuroscience and Psychiatry and Behavioral Biology. “That gap is large because, as a reaction to the excesses of the 1960s, human research with hallucinogens has been basically frozen in time these last forty years.”
There have been some studies using this as a treatment for depression in adults but it is still considered unsafe and illegal.
Effects of Psilocybin
- spiritual awakening
- quickly changing emotions
- derealization or the feeling the that evirnment is not real
- depersonalization, or a dream like sense of being disengaged from surroundings
- distorted thinking
- visual alterations and distortion, like halos of light and vidid color
- dilated pupils
- impaired concentration
- unusual body sensations
- frightening hallucinations
These are risks for adults, the study in question in the introductions wants to test this on children under 5.
- reckless behavior
- distressing altercations to the way they see the world. This can last up to 2 weeks. This is called hallucinogen persisting reception disorder, or a flashback.
- schizophrenia like syndrome
With all these risks and effects, people are willing to subject this to children, whose brains do not finish developing until they are 25. This drug is shown to effect the brain. Why take this chance? If you are an adult, you can do what you want. Do not do this to small children who depend on their parents to protect them and have their best interests at heart.