Silicon Valley engineers psychedelic drug to treat addiction

Silicon Valley startup, MindMed, is in the business of turning psychedelic drugs into medicine, and its first drug with the potential to treat addiction may be just around the corner. The drug is said to have the ability to turn addictions “off like a light switch,” including alcohol, cocaine, methamphetamine, morphine and even sugar.

Known as 18-MC, the compound has not been tested yet in human efficacy trials, but it’s been in the works for nearly a decade. In June 2019, MindMed bought 18-MC from Savant Health and Wellness Partners, after the company ran out of money to continue with the product.

According to initial test results, 18-MC does not affect the heart or cause hallucinations. Researchers believe it can work to treat addiction by indirectly modulating the release of dopamine that occurs with addictive drugs. MindMed plans to run safety trials and efficacy trials in 2020.

Besides additional testing, MindMed faces other challenges, such as getting the FDA on board. While the compound may be cleared for use in a medical office, it may never be legalized or permitted for use at home.

In his latest book, “How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us about Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence,” Michael Pollan delves into the potential benefits of hallucinogenic drugs. Pollan, like most, was under the impression that psychedelics were a product of the 1960s, but in fact, researchers had already studied psychedelics for some 15 years, primarily as treatments for addiction, depression and relieving the fear of death among those dying from cancer — the very same indications for which these drugs are being studied today.

Psychedelics quiet the area of the brain where negative narratives live, allowing you to get out of whatever destructive thought pattern you might be in. As such they may also be useful for obsessive-compulsive disorder and addictions of all kinds. The good news is, you're not restricted to psychedelic drugs to achieve similar benefits. A consistent meditation and/or breathing practice can help you reap similar benefits, albeit over a longer period of time.


By Dr Joseph Mercola / Physician and author

Dr. Joseph Mercola has been passionate about health and technology for most of his life. As a doctor of osteopathic medicine (DO), he treated thousands of patients for over 20 years.

Dr. Mercola finished his family practice residency in 1985. Because he was trained under the conventional medical model, he treated patients using prescription drugs during his first years of private practice and was actually a paid speaker for drug companies.

But as he began to experience the failures of the conventional model in his practice, he embraced natural medicine and found great success with time-tested holistic approaches. He founded The Natural Health Center (formerly The Optimal Wellness Center), which became well-known for its whole-body approach to medicine.

In 1997, Dr. Mercola integrated his passion for natural health with modern technology via the Internet. He founded the website to share his own health experiences and spread the word about natural ways to achieve optimal health. is now the world’s most visited natural health website, averaging 14 million visitors monthly and with over one million subscribers.

Dr. Mercola aims to ignite a transformation of the fatally flawed health care system in the United States, and to inspire people to take control of their health. He has made significant milestones in his mission to bring safe and practical solutions to people’s health problems.

Dr. Mercola authored two New York Times Bestsellers, The Great Bird Flu Hoax and The No-Grain Diet. He was also voted the 2009 Ultimate Wellness Game Changer by the Huffington Post, and has been featured in TIME magazine, LA Times, CNN, Fox News, ABC News with Peter Jennings, Today Show, CBS’s Washington Unplugged with Sharyl Attkisson, and other major media resources.

Stay connected with Dr. Mercola by following him on Twitter. You can also check out his Facebook page for more timely natural health updates.

(Source:; December 12, 2019;
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