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Classical hallucinogens as antidepressants? A review of pharmacodynamics and putative clinical roles

Authors: David Baumeister, Georgina Barnes, Giovanni Giaroli and Derek Tracy

Published in Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology 2014, Vol. 4(4) pp. 156–169.


Hallucinogens have been part of spiritual practice for millennia, but controversy surrounding their mind-manifesting effects led to their proscription by the mid-20th century, largely without evidence of harm or toxicity and despite nascent data suggesting therapeutic utility in treating depressive illnesses. This review explores their pharmacodynamic actions and the current limited data on their clinic effectiveness.