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Nov 29, 2022

Clinical Trial Examines Synthetic Psilocybin as a Treatment for Severe Depression

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

Individuals suffering from severe depression may find relief from just a single dose of a synthetic version of psilocybin, or “magic mushrooms,” according to a new study published this week.

The findings, which were published Wednesday by The New England Journal of Medicine, come from a double-blind trial involving 233 “randomly assigned adults with treatment-resistant depression [who received] a single dose of a proprietary, synthetic formulation of psilocybin at a dose of 25 mg, 10 mg, or 1 mg (control), along with psychological support.”

“In this phase 2 trial involving participants with treatment-resistant depression, psilocybin at a single dose of 25 mg, but not 10 mg, reduced depression scores significantly more than a 1-mg dose over a period of 3 weeks but was associated with adverse effects,” the authors wrote in their conclusions, adding that “larger and longer trials, including comparison with existing treatments, are required to determine the efficacy and safety of psilocybin for this disorder.”

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Nov 29, 2022

Single-Dose Psilocybin for a Treatment-Resistant Episode of Major Depression

Posted by in category: neuroscience

The views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NHS, the National Institute for Health or Care Research, or the Department of Health and Social Care in the United Kingdom.

This article was updated on November 3, 2022, at NEJM.org.

A data sharing statement provided by the authors is available with the full text of this article at NEJM.org.

Nov 29, 2022

New Insights into the Chemical Composition of Ayahuasca

Posted by in category: chemistry

Ayahuasca is a psychedelic beverage originally from the Amazon rainforest used in different shamanic settings for medicinal, spiritual, and cultural purposes. It is prepared by boiling in water an admixture of the Amazonian vine Banisteriopsis caapi, which is a source of β-carboline alkaloids, with plants containing N, N-dimethyltryptamine, usually Psychotria viridis. While previous studies have focused on the detection and quantification of the alkaloids present in the drink, less attention has been given to other nonalkaloid components or the composition of the solids suspended in the beverage, which may also affect its psychoactive properties. In this study, we used nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) to study the composition of ayahuasca samples, to determine their alkaloid qualitative and quantitative profiles, as well as other major soluble and nonsoluble components. For the first time, fructose was detected as a major component of the samples, while harmine (a β-carboline previously described as an abundant alkaloid in ayahuasca) was found to be present in the solids suspended in the beverage. In addition, N, N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT), harmine, tetrahydroharmine, harmaline, and harmol were identified as the major alkaloids present in extracts of all samples. Finally, a novel, easy, and fast method using quantitative NMR was developed and validated to simultaneously quantify the content of these alkaloids found in each ayahuasca sample.

Ayahuasca, commonly translated from the Quechua language as “vine of the spirits” or “vine of the dead”, is a psychedelic beverage originally from the Amazon rainforest used in different shamanic settings for a variety of medicinal, spiritual, and cultural purposes.1 It is prepared by boiling in water an admixture of the vine Banisteriopsis caapi, which is a source of β-carboline alkaloids, and other plants containing N, N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT), usually Psychotria viridis ( Figure Figure1 1 ) or Diplopterys cabrerana, (where the preparation name is usually referred to as yagé).2.

Nov 29, 2022

Another Universe Existed Before Ours — And Energy From It Is Coming Out Of Black Holes

Posted by in category: cosmology

An older universe existed before the Big Bang, and proof for its existence can still be found in black holes, according to a Nobel Prize-winning physicist. Sir Roger Penrose made the assertion after receiving the award for advances in Einstein’s general theory of relativity and proof of black hole existence. Sir Roger contends that inexplicable regions of electromagnetic radiation in the sky, known as ‘Hawking Points,’ represent vestiges of an earlier universe.

Nov 29, 2022

Quantum Computers and the Universe

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics, space

Ideas for quantum computing change the way we think about space and time.

Nov 29, 2022

Rare success for Alzheimer’s research unlocks hope for future therapies

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

CHICAGO, Nov 29 (Reuters) — The first big breakthrough in 30 years of Alzheimer’s research is providing momentum for clinical trials of “cocktail” treatments targeting the two hallmark proteins associated with the mind-robbing disease, according to interviews with researchers and pharmaceutical executives.

Drugmakers Eisai Co Ltd (4523.T) and Biogen (BIIB.O)

Reported in September that their therapy lecanemab could slow progress of the disease by 27% over 18 months compared with a placebo [ read more.

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Nov 29, 2022

Neuralink to make major announcement tomorrow #shorts

Posted by in categories: media & arts, neuroscience

Music is Truth Police by White Bat AudioDespite personal controversies I’m interested to see where the science goes.

Nov 29, 2022

Bitcoin On Exchanges Keeps Sliding, 1 Million BTC Pulled From These Platforms

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin is trending sideways in its current range, the cryptocurrency managed to prevent a fresh assault from the bears, but uncertainty remains strong in the market. This status quo supports the price action, and it could operate as the dominant trend for the remaining of the year.

As of this writing, Bitcoin trades at $16,400. The cryptocurrency has been stuck at these levels for today’s trading session after re-testing its yearly lows yesterday. In the wake of FTX’s collapse, crypto users have lost confidence. This could have a long-lasting impact on the nascent asset class.

Data from crypto exchange Bitfinex indicates that users are withdrawing their Bitcoin from exchanges en masse. The FTX’s collapse triggered a massive BTC outflow from trading venues; investors fear losing their funds in the contagion.

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Nov 29, 2022

Scientists hail major breakthrough in fight against Alzheimer’s as drug proven to slow disease

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

‘This is the first drug that provides a real treatment option,’ says leading researcher Scientists are hailing a historic step in the fight against Alzheimer’s, after a drug was proven to slow the disease in long-awaited clinical trials. The breakthrough comes after decades of failed attempts to find a way to do so, and has prompted hope among experts that it could eventually pave the way for treatments which could ultimately lead to a cure.

Nov 29, 2022

Seemingly Impossible: Nanostructure Compresses Light 10,000 Times Thinner Than a Human Hair

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, nanotechnology

Until recently, physicists widely believed that it was impossible to compress light below the so-called diffraction limit, except when utilizing metal nanoparticles, which also absorb light. As a result, it seemed to be impossible to compress light strongly in dielectric materials like silicon, which are essential for information technologies and had the significant advantage of not absorbing light. Interestingly, it was theoretically shown that the diffraction limit does not apply to dielectrics back in 2006. However, no one has been able to demonstrate this in the actual world due to the fact that it requires such complex nanotechnology that no one has yet been able to create the required dielectric nanostructures.

A research team from the Technical University of Denmark has created a device known as a “dielectric nanocavity” that successfully concentrates light in a volume 12 times smaller than the diffraction limit. The finding is groundbreaking in optical research and was recently published in the journal Nature Communications.

Nature Communications is a peer-reviewed, open access, multidisciplinary, scientific journal published by Nature Research. It covers the natural sciences, including physics, biology, chemistry, medicine, and earth sciences. It began publishing in 2010 and has editorial offices in London, Berlin, New York City, and Shanghai.

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