How To Join a Psychedelic Clinical Trial

You could be eligible to participate in a psychedelic research trial. Studies of psychedelics are at various stages, enrolling both healthy volunteers and individuals with specific mental health conditions. We’ve compiled a list here of all the current or planned clinical trials on MDMA, psilocybin, LSD, ibogaine, and more. Regulatory approvals over the last few decades gave way to several MDMA and psilocybin pilot studies, while research around the world is exponentially growing. New investigations for the therapeutic use of psychedelics, as well as inquiries into how the brain works and what constitutes consciousness are appearing all the time.

The forerunners in this field pave the way for others by contributing evidence-based findings to the body of knowledge. Several organizations, academic institutions, and corporations are leading the psychedelic research field forward. The Heffter Research Institute and the Beckley Foundation are pioneering non-profit organizations funding and supporting many dimensions of psychedelic research. The Usona Institute conducts pre-clinical and clinical research to further the understanding of the therapeutic effects of psilocybin and other consciousness-expanding medicines. The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) is non-profit research and educational organization that develops medical, legal, and cultural contexts for people to benefit from the careful uses of psychedelics and marijuana. MAPS Public Benefit Corporation, a fully-owned subsidiary of MAPS, is sponsoring trials for MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for various anxiety-related conditions. COMPASS Pathways is a mental health care company conducting psilocybin clinical trials in Europe and North America for treatment-resistant depression. The Imperial Centre for Psychedelic Research focuses on the mechanisms of action and clinical use of psychedelics, with a particular focus on researching treatments for depression. The Johns Hopkins University Center for Psychedelics & Consciousness Research researches how psychedelics affect behavior, mood, cognition, brain function, and biological markers of health. There are many more participating universities and organizations around the world, some of whom are listed below.

Following is a list of current or planned clinical trials with psychedelics (as of March 2020) in healthy individuals and in people with a specific medical condition. We searched clinical trial registries for USA, Europe, and Brazil: clinicaltrials.govclinicaltrialsregister.euensaiosclinicos.gov.br. While we’ve attempted to make this list comprehensive, new trials are emerging often and our online search may not have revealed all. Contact study sites through the contact information provided in the clinical trial records below.

Jump Ahead To:

Background

MDMA

Psilocybin

LSD

Cannabis

Ketamine

Ibogaine

Salvinorin

MDMA

A Multi-Site Phase 3 Study of MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy for PTSD (MAPP1 and MAPP2)

Sponsor: MAPS

Population: PTSD

Location: USA, Canada, and Israel

Enrollment: Enrolling now

More Info: MAPP1 and MAPP2 (to enroll visit https://mdmaptsd.org).

Learn more about safety and effectiveness from clinical research in the MDMA Investigator Brochure (2017)

Evaluation of MDMA on Startle Response

Sponsor: MAPS

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Emory University, Atlanta, GA

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trial record

MDMA in Subjects With Moderate Hepatic Impairment and Subjects With Normal Hepatic Function

Sponsor: MAPS

Population: Healthy Volunteers/Hepatic Impaired Volunteers

Location: University of California, San Francisco, CA

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trial record

Effects of Drugs on Responses to Brain and Emotional Processes (MAT)

Sponsor: University of Chicago

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Chicago, IL

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Effect of Stimulant Drugs on Social Perception (ESP)

Sponsor: University of Chicago

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Chicago, IL

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Mood Effects of Serotonin Agonists

Sponsor: University of Chicago

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Chicago, IL

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

The Effects of MDMA on Prefrontal and Amygdala Activation in PTSD

Sponsor: Yale University

Population: PTSD

Location: New Haven, CT

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Effect of Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) on Fear Extinction

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Open-Label Proof of Concept Feasibility Study to Explore the Safety, Tolerability and Potential Role of MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy for the Treatment of Detoxified Patients with Alcohol Use Disorder

Sponsor: Imperial College London

Population: Alcohol Use Disorders

Location: UK

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Open-Label Multi-Site Study of Safety and Effects of MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy for Treatment of PTSD with Optional fMRI Sub-Study

Sponsor: MAPS Europe B.V.

Population: PTSD

Location: Netherlands, Czechia, Norway, Portugal, United Kingdom

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trial record

MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy in Veterans With Combat-Related, Refractory PTSD (VALLMDMA_001)

Sponsor:  VA Loma Linda Health Care System and MAPS

Population: Combat-Related PTSD

Location: Loma Linda, California

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Stanford Reward Circuits of the Brain Study – MDMA (RBRAIN-MDMA)

Sponsor:  Stanford University

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Palo Alto, CA

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Bristol Imperial MDMA in Alcoholism Study (BIMA)

Sponsor:  Imperial College London

Population: Alcohol Use Disorder

Location: Bristol, United Kingdom

Enrollment: Active, Not Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA)-assisted Psychotherapy in the Treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Sponsor: Planting Consciousness Institute in collaboration with MAPS

Population: PTSD

Location: Brazil

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Role of Dopamine, Serotonin, and 5-HT2A Receptors in Emotion Processing

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Open-Label Multi-Site Study of Safety and Effects of MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy for Treatment of PTSD

Sponsor: MAPS

Population: PTSD

Location: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Louisiana, Massachusetts, New York, South Carolina, Wisconsin

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trial record

Study of Safety and Effects of MDMA-assisted Psychotherapy for Treatment of PTSD

Sponsor: MAPS

Population: PTSD

Location: British Columbia and Quebec, Canada

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trial record

Psilocybin

A Study of Psilocybin for Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)

Sponsor: Usona Institute, Signant Health, The Emmes Company, LLC

Population: Major Depressive Disorder

Location: San Francisco, CA; New Haven, CT; Lauderhill, FL; Chicago, IL (Not Yet Recruiting); Baltimore, MD; New York, NY; Madison, WI (Not Yet Recruiting)

Enrollment: Enrolling Now (at certain locations)

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Effects of Psilocybin in Anorexia Nervosa

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University

Population: Anorexia Nervosa

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin for Depression in People With Mild Cognitive Impairment or Early Alzheimer’s Disease

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University

Population: Neurocognitive Disorder or Clinical Dementia, and Depression

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Prophylactic Effects of Psilocybin on Chronic Cluster Headache (EPOCH)

Sponsor: Gitte Moos Knudsen

Population: Chronic Cluster Headache

Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Effects of Psilocybin in Post-Traumatic Headache

Sponsor: Yale University

Population: Post-Traumatic Headache

Location: West Haven, CT

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Adjunctive Effects of Psilocybin and Buprenorphine

Sponsor: University of Wisconsin, Heffter Research Institute

Population: Opioid Use Disorder

Location: Madison, WI

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Effects of SERT Inhibition on the Subjective Response to Psilocybin in Healthy Subjects

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Characterization of Altered Waking States of Consciousness in Healthy Humans

Sponsor: University of Zurich

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Zürich, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

The Safety and Efficacy of Psilocybin in Participants With Treatment Resistant Depression (P-TRD)

Sponsor: COMPASS Pathways

Population: Treatment Resistant Depression

Location: United States, Canada, and Europe

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin-facilitated Smoking Cessation Treatment: A Pilot Study

Sponsor: John Hopkins School of Medicine in collaboration with Beckley Foundation and Heffter Research Institute

Population: Smokers

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

The Effects of Psilocybin-Facilitated Experience on the Psychology and Effectiveness of Religious Professionals

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University

Population: Religious Professionals

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

A Double-blind Trial of Psilocybin-assisted Treatment of Alcohol Dependence

Sponsor: NYU Langone Health in collaboration with Heffter Research Institute and University of New Mexico

Population: Alcohol Use Disorders

Location: New York, NY

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

The Effects of Psilocybin-Facilitated Experience on the Psychology and Effectiveness of Religious Professionals

Sponsor: NYU Langone Health

Population: Religious Professionals

Location: New York, NY

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin for Treatment of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Sponsor: University of Arizona

Population: OCD

Location: Tuscon, AZ

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Efficacy of Psilocybin in OCD: a Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study

Sponsor: Yale University

Population: OCD

Location: New Haven, CT

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin – Induced Neuroplasticity in the Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder

Sponsor: Yale University in collaboration with Heffter Research Institute

Population: Depression

Location: New Haven, CT

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Direct Comparison of Altered States of Consciousness Induced by LSD and Psilocybin in a Random-order Placebo-controlled Cross-over Study in Healthy Subjects

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin for the Treatment of Cluster Headache

Sponsor: Yale University in collaboration with Heffter Research Institute and Cluster Headache-Trigeminal Autonomic Cephalalgia LLC

Population: Cluster Headache

Location: New Haven, CT

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin-facilitated Treatment for Cocaine Use

Sponsor: University of Alabama at Birmingham

Population: Cocaine Addiction

Location: Birmingham, AL

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Clinical, Neurocognitive, and Emotional Effects of Psilocybin in Depressed Patients – Proof of Concept

Sponsor: University of Zurich

Population: Major Depression

Location: Zurich, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Clinical and Mechanistic Effects of Psilocybin in Alcohol Addicted Patients

Sponsor: University of Zurich, Schweizerischer Nationalfonds

Population: Alcohol Use Disorder

Location: Zurich, Switzerland

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Repeat Dosing of Psilocybin in Migraine Headache

Sponsor: Yale University, Wallace Research Foundation

Population: Migraine Headache

Location: New Haven, CT

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin and Depression

Sponsor: Helsinki University

Population: Depression

Location: Helsinki, Finland

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Comparative Acute Effects of LSD, Psilocybin and Mescaline (LPM)

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

The Neurobiological Effect of 5-HT2AR Modulation

Sponsor: Gitte Moos Knudsen

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Rigshospitalet, Denmark

Enrollment: Unknown

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Beyond the Self and Back: Neuropharmacological Mechanisms Underlying the Dissolution of the Self

Sponsor: University of Zurich

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Zurich, Switzerland

Enrollment: Active, Not Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin vs Escitalopram for Major Depressive Disorder: Comparative Mechanisms in a Randomized Controlled Trial

Sponsor: Imperial College London

Population: Depression

Location: UK

Enrollment: Active, Not Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Effects of Psilocybin on Major Depressive Disorder

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University

Population: Depression

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Active, Not Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin Cancer Anxiety Study

Sponsor: New York University (NYU) School of Medicine

Population: Cancer

Location: New York, NY

Enrollment: Active, Not Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin for the Treatment of Migraine Headache Yale University

Sponsor: Yale University

Population: Migraine

Location: New Haven, CT

Enrollment: Active, Not Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Psilocybin-assisted Group Therapy for Demoralization in Long-term AIDS Survivors a Study on Distress, Depression, Grief, HIV/AIDS

Sponsor: University of California San Francisco

Population: HIV/AIDS

Location: San Francisco, CA

Enrollment: Completed

More Info:  Clinical Trials record

Effects of Psilocybin on Behavior, Psychology and Brain Function in Long-term Meditators

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University

Population: Long-term Meditators

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Persisting Effects of Psilocybin

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University in collaboration with NIDA

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trials record

LSD

LSD Therapy for Persons Suffering From Major Depression (LAD)

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Major Depressive Disorder

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Mood Effects of Serotonin Agonists

Sponsor: University of Chicago

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Chicago, IL

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Mood Effects of Serotonin Agonists Extended (MESA-E)

Sponsor: University of Chicago

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Chicago, IL

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD) as Treatment for Cluster Headache (LCH)

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Cluster Headache

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

LSD Treatment in Persons Suffering From Anxiety Symptoms in Severe Somatic Diseases or in Psychiatric Anxiety Disorders (LSD-assist)

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Anxiety

Location: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Direct Comparison of Altered States of Consciousness Induced by LSD and Psilocybin in a Random-order Placebo-controlled Cross-over Study in Healthy Subjects

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Enrolling Now

More Info: Clinical Trial record

Role of Dopamine, Serotonin and 5-HT2A Receptors in Emotion Processing

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trial record

Role of the Serotonin 5-HT2A Receptor in LSD-induced Altered States of Consciousness (LDR-Study)

Sponsor: University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Basel, Switzerland

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trial record

IBOGAINE

Preliminary Efficacy and Safety of Ibogaine in the Treatment of Methadone Detoxification

Sponsor: International Center for Ethnobotanical Education, Research, and Service

Population: Opioid Use Disorders

Location: Spain

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Ibogaine in the Treatment of Alcoholism: a Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled, Escalating-dose, Phase 2 Trial

Sponsor: University of Sao Paulo

Population: Alcohol Use Disorders

Location: Ribeirao Preto, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Enrollment: Not Yet Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

SALVINORIN A

Effects of Salvinorin A in Healthy Controls

Sponsor: Yale University

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: West Haven, Connecticut

Enrollment: Active, not Recruiting

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Effects of Hallucinogens and Other Drugs on Mood and Performance

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Placebo Controlled Study of Sublingual Salvinorin A (6A)

Sponsor: California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute

Population: Experienced Subjects

Location: San Francisco, CA

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Human Psychopharmacology of Salvinorin A

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trials record

Effects of Salvinorin A on Brain Function

Sponsor: Johns Hopkins University

Population: Healthy Volunteers

Location: Baltimore, MD

Enrollment: Completed

More Info: Clinical Trials record

KETAMINE

Too many to list! search clinicaltrials.gov

CANNABIS

Too many to list! search clinicaltrials.gov

Background: How Does a Clinical Trial Work

Clinical trials collect data to evaluate safety and efficacy of drugs under investigation in research. Drugs must pass through a sequence of phases or stages to become approved and available to patients. A new substance is first thoroughly tested in human cells and/or animals to gain initial information about safety and toxicity. If enough research exists in scientific journals, sometimes an already known drug like some psychedelics, can go through less animal testing or wait till later in the process to complete. After review, FDA can grant approval to test the drug in a small number of healthy individuals (phase 1). The next phase of testing involves giving a drug to people who have a disease or condition (phase 2) to evaluate safety and effectiveness to reduce symptoms. If the drug appears safe and signals the potential to be a useful treatment, then a much larger number of people are tested in phase 3 trials at multiple study sites. For the FDA to approve a new drug for a specific condition or disease, two phase 3 trials must show significant benefit that outweighs the risks or negative side effects of taking the drug. After the drug is approved and sold in the consumer market, research continues in phase 4 known as post marketing surveillance trials. Phase 4 trials collect data on long-term effectiveness and safety, costs associated with treatment compared to other drugs in the market, and safety and effectiveness of the new drug versus other available treatment options.

This post was originally published in July 2018 and has been updated to reflect the current list and status of clinical trials.