Psychedelic Science: Researchers enlist Psilocybin to help fight alcoholism

It may seem counterintuitive to treat addiction with a drug that the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) classifies as one that carries a high risk of addiction. But psilocybin — the naturally-occurring drug found in "magic mushrooms" — is showing promise in the treatment of alcoholism and other addictions, say researchers, who have conducted scientific studies with the hallucinogen.

"The stronger the person's subjective response to psilocybin and the more they reported dimensions of mystical quality to the experience, the greater their clinical improvement in terms of both their drinking and their psychological status," says Dr. Michael P. Bogenschutz, professor and vice-chair for Addiction Psychiatry and Clinical Research at the University of New Mexico who recently completed a pilot study that used psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy.