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    ayahuasca iowaska antidepressant antidepresivo ICEERS

    Study: Ayahuasca as an Antidepressant

    13.09.2021

    Translational evidence for ayahuasca as an antidepressant: what’s next?

    Authors:
    Rafael Guimarães dos Santos & José Carlos Bouso.

    Journal:
    Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry

    Year:
    2019

    About the study

    Depression is one of the most important contributors to global disability and suicidal deaths. Available antidepressants are usually selective inhibitors of serotonin and norepinephrine uptake, which need weeks of daily intake, have limited efficacy for many patients, and induce adverse reactions after prolonged use. Therefore, recent research has focused on finding new antidepressant compounds that are fast-acting, more effective, and less toxic.

    This article reviews the previous preclinical, experimental and clinical studies available in the scientific literature in order to provide further translational evidence of the antidepressant effects of ayahuasca.

     The results were observed with single doses in few patients, and the depressive symptoms returned some weeks after ayahuasca intake. Thus, ayahuasca is not a cure for depression, and further studies using more doses in larger samples are necessary to evaluate its long-term efficacy and safety.

    The authors conclude: “If these studies show positive results, we will need to think about the inclusion of ayahuasca in our health system. Considering its traditional uses to improve health in Brazil and other Amazonian countries and the need for better treatments for depression, the future seems promising.”

    Rafael Guimaraes dos Santos is a fellow from Programa Nacional de Pós-Doutorado, Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (PNPD/CAPES) and a member of the Advisory Board of ICEERS, a non-profit organization that promotes the scientific research of plant hallucinogens such as ayahuasca and ibogaine. José Carlos Bouso is the Scientific Director of ICEERS. None of the authors received any specific funding for writing this manuscript.

    Cite: dos Santos RG, Bouso JC. Translational evidence for ayahuasca as an antidepressant: what’s next? Braz J Psychiatry. 2019;41:275-276. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/1516-4446-2019-4104

    Link to the article

     
    Photo by Nastya Dulhiier on Unsplash.

    Categories: Studies & papers , Ayahuasca
    Tags: ayahuasca , scientific research , study , psychedelics , hallucinogens , antidepressant