The Promise of Psychedelics | Dr. Keith Heinzerling & Louie Schwartzberg
by Anthony Effinger
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The Think Neuro podcast from Pacific Neuroscience Institute takes you into the clinic, operating room and laboratory with doctors and surgeons who are tackling the most challenging brain diseases and disorders. Host: Anthony Effinger
Episode 9: Show Notes
Addiction and depression are two of the most widespread conditions in all of medicine. After decades of research, doctors are still looking for alternatives for when medication and cognitive training don’t work, which is all too often.
Dr. Dan Kelly, one of the founders of the Pacific Neuroscience Institute, thinks there is a game-changer in our midst: psilocybin. Better known as the active ingredient in magic mushrooms, psilocybin has demonstrated staggering results for people trying to kick alcoholism, relieve depression and PTSD, and master the existential dread that comes at the end of life.
Addiction medicine specialist Dr. Keith Heinzerling runs PNI’s new Treatment & Research in Psychedelics program (TRIP). Starting in December 2020, consented and eligible patients will be given psilocybin for Alcohol Use Disorder in a controlled, clinical trials setting, and integrate the experience through talk therapy sessions afterward.
National Geographic filmmaker and psychedelic expert Louie Schwartzberg consults with TRIP at PNI, to offer patients the option of viewing his time-lapse cinematography during their treatment to augment the experience. Schwartzberg introduced many people to the new thinking about psilocybin in his acclaimed 2019 film Fantastic Fungi.
Think Neuro sat down with Heinzerling and Schwartzberg to talk about the promise of psychedelic treatments and how they are likely to change the lives of people struggling with intractable addiction, depression, and PTSD.
About Dr. Keith Heinzerling
Dr. Keith Heinzerling practices internal medicine and is an addiction medicine specialist at the Pacific Brain Health Center, Pacific Neuroscience Institute. His clinical and research focuses are on the treatment of alcohol, drug and substance use problems, with anti-addiction medications. As director of the TRIP program, he is involved in the development of psychedelic-assisted therapies for those suffering with addiction, depression, anxiety, and PTSD.
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About the Author
Think Neuro's host is Anthony Effinger, an award-winning journalist who is fascinated with neuroscience and the workings of the brain. Anthony spent 24 years at Bloomberg News, where he covered all aspects of finance, with forays into science and health. In 2006, the Association of Health Care Journalists awarded him first prize for Playing the Odds, an in-depth piece on the changing strategies used to treat prostate cancer. These days, he is a staff writer at Willamette Week, a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper in Portland, Oregon, where he lives with his wife and two children.
Last updated: December 17th, 2020