UW-Madison researchers are studying psilocybin, the hallucinogenic ingredient in “magic mushrooms,” to treat people with opioid and methamphetamine use disorders, in what they say are the first such clinical trials anywhere.

In another study of people undergoing psilocybin’s psychedelic effects, the researchers are administering a sedative to block memory of the experience and answer a key question: Do patients need to remember their emotionally challenging “trips” in order to gain therapeutic benefits or are brain changes from the drug enough?

The research, using psilocybin from Fitchburg-based Usona Institute, is part of the growing field of psychoactive medicine to treat mental health conditions, including various forms of addiction.

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