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Post: DEA Challenges Bid To Use Psilocybin Under ‘Right To Try’ Legislation

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DEA Challenges Bid To Use Psilocybin Under ‘Right To Try’ Legislation

Shutterstock The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has urged a federal appeals court to deny a doctor’s attempt to administer psilocybin to dying patients under so-called Right to Try legislation, arguing that such laws do not provide for exemptions to the federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA).

Dr. Sunil Aggarwal, co-founder of the Advanced Integrative Medical Science Institute, a psychedelics research and treatment clinic based in Seattle, has sued the DEA several times for authorization to use psilocybin as a treatment for depression and anxiety by terminally ill patients. Aggarwal’s legal actions are based on federal and state Right to Try laws, which permit patients with terminal illnesses to use investigational drugs for therapeutic purposes before they are approved for general use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Psilocybin, the compound primarily responsible for the psychedelic effects of magic mushrooms, has been shown through clinical research to have great potential as a treatment for serious mental health conditions including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and substance misuse disorders. The compound has been designated as a “breakthrough therapy” by the FDA but remains a Schedule I drug under the CSA, a classification reserved for drugs with no medical value.

The state of Washington approved a Right to Try bill in 2017, the same year former President Donald Trump signed the federal Right to Try Act into law. Aggarwal argues in his legal action that the legislation gives him the right to administer psilocybin to his patients with terminal illnesses.

The DEA, however, has rejected Aggarwal’s […]

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