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Papers of the Week

2022 Mar 11

J Fungi (Basel)



Mycotherapy: Potential of Fungal Bioactives for the Treatment of Mental Health Disorders and Morbidities of Chronic Pain.



Mushrooms have been used as traditional medicine for millennia, fungi are the main natural source of psychedelic compounds. There is now increasing interest in using fungal active compounds such as psychedelics for alleviating symptoms of mental health disorders including major depressive disorder, anxiety, and addiction. The anxiolytic, antidepressant and anti-addictive effect of these compounds has raised awareness stimulating neuropharmacological investigations. Micro-dosing or acute dosing with psychedelics including Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and psilocybin may offer patients treatment options which are unmet by current therapeutic options. Studies suggest that either dosing regimen produces a rapid and long-lasting effect on the patient post administration with a good safety profile. Psychedelics can also modulate immune systems including pro-inflammatory cytokines suggesting a potential in the treatment of auto-immune and other chronic pain conditions. This literature review aims to explore recent evidence relating to the application of fungal bioactives in treating chronic mental health and chronic pain morbidities.