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Chronic, Intermittent Microdoses of the Psychedelic N, N-Dimethyltryptamine (DMT) Produce Positive Effects on Mood and Anxiety in Rodents.

Authors
  • Cameron, Lindsay P1
  • Benson, Charlie J2
  • DeFelice, Brian C3
  • Fiehn, Oliver3, 4
  • Olson, David E2, 5, 6
  • 1 Neuroscience Graduate Program , University of California, Davis , 1544 Newton Ct , Davis , California 95618 , United States. , (United States)
  • 2 Department of Chemistry , University of California, Davis , One Shields Avenue , Davis , California 95616 , United States. , (United States)
  • 3 West Coast Metabolomics Center , University of California, Davis , One Shields Avenue , Davis , California 95616 , United States. , (United States)
  • 4 Biochemistry Department , King Abdulaziz University , Jeddah , Saudi-Arabia.
  • 5 Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Medicine, School of Medicine , University of California, Davis , 2700 Stockton Blvd, Suite 2102 , Sacramento , California 95817 , United States. , (United States)
  • 6 Center for Neuroscience , University of California, Davis , 1544 Newton Ct , Davis , California 95618 , United States. , (United States)
Type
Published Article
Journal
ACS Chemical Neuroscience
Publisher
American Chemical Society
Publication Date
Mar 04, 2019
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1021/acschemneuro.8b00692
PMID: 30829033
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Drugs capable of ameliorating symptoms of depression and anxiety while also improving cognitive function and sociability are highly desirable. Anecdotal reports have suggested that serotonergic psychedelics administered in low doses on a chronic, intermittent schedule, so-called "microdosing", might produce beneficial effects on mood, anxiety, cognition, and social interaction. Here, we test this hypothesis by subjecting male and female Sprague Dawley rats to behavioral testing following the chronic, intermittent administration of low doses of the psychedelic N, N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT). The behavioral and cellular effects of this dosing regimen were distinct from those induced following a single high dose of the drug. We found that chronic, intermittent, low doses of DMT produced an antidepressant-like phenotype and enhanced fear extinction learning without impacting working memory or social interaction. Additionally, male rats treated with DMT on this schedule gained a significant amount of body weight during the course of the study. Taken together, our results suggest that psychedelic microdosing may alleviate symptoms of mood and anxiety disorders, though the potential hazards of this practice warrant further investigation.

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