Neurological research scientist confirms that LSD/Psilocybin theories are on target - study planned

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Posted by Flash ( on July 25, 2000 at 07:13:54:

Here is a copy of the email he sent me.

RE: interesting message about cluster headaches
Sun, 23 Jul 2000 05:55:36 -0600
Ethan Russo

Dear Craig,
I do not know whether you have previously seen this:

In essence, for the last decade, I have been attempting to study the very
phenomenon you describe.
I would very much like to investigate prophylactic use of psilocybin and
LSD in cluster (and migraine prevention). One problem with cluster is that
attacks for many are sporadic, and a very long follow-up period is necessary
to "prove" preventative benefits. Because of the relative rarity of
intractable cluster cases, there may be the potential for pursuing what is
called Orphan Drug Status for these agents.
I fully intend to pursue an IND (Investigational New Drug) application
with the American FDA (Food and Drug Administration) within one calendar
year. I have a prior commitment to initiate studies of cannabis in migraine,
but once that is underway, I hope to pursue something along the lines you
describe. If you know of interested scientists in the UK, and if you believe
that the research climate there would be more conducive to this type of
endeavor, please let me know, for I would be very pleased to collaborate.
In the meantime, it would be important for you to know that your
assertions are absolutely on target from a scientific point of view.
All best wishes,
Ethan Russo

Ethan Russo, MD

Montana Neurobehavioral Specialists
900 North Orange Street
Missoula, MT 59802
Voice: (406) 327-3372
FAX: (406) 327-3355
E-mail (secondary):

18717 Highway 200 East
Bonner, MT 59823
Voice: (406) 244-5738
FAX: (406) 244-5739
E-mail (Primary):

-----Original Message-----
From: []
Sent: Friday, July 21, 2000 6:09 PM
Subject: interesting message about cluster headaches


MAPS received a very interesting message about the use of LSD and psilocybin
in treating cluster headaches. I'm sending it to you below. Could you
to Craig and cc me?

Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2000 12:53:03 +0100
From: Craig Adams
Subject: Cluster headache sufferers have been using both LSD and Psilcybin
a treatment


I don't know if you are the right people to talk to...

I have been a cluster headache sufferer since 1985. An estimated 1
person in 250000 suffers from cluster headaches. Some of us have been
using the drugs Psilocybin, Psilocilin and LSD to treat our condition.
I personally have found these treatments to be 100% successful, and have
been using them since 1993.

We believe they work because of the similarity that their chemical
structures have with Serotonin, particularly the Indole Ring.
Psilocilin is almost identical. Serotonin has been implicated in
causing cluster headaches, and it is known that a 'Serotonin storm'
occurs in the brain prior to cluster headache attacks and attacks of
other vascular headache such as migraine.

In the 1960s LSD was trialed as migraine treatment. In fact I believe
that Hoffmann was researching migraine treatments when he originally
extracted LSD from Ergot. Two other widely used cluster headache and
migraine treatments are Ergotamine and Methysergide, these are also
derived from Ergot. All 3 substances are classed as Ergot Alkaloids.

Both LSD and Psilocybin are much more effective than either Ergotamine
and Methysergide. A single 25mcg dose of LSD will completely prevent
cluster headache episodes for up to 12 months. Likewise Psilocybin,
although I'm not sure of the exact dose, it is 1/4 of the typical
recreational dose.

Given that the effective doses of these substances are so small, very
little in the way of recreational type side effects occur. The
substances are also considered non-toxic, with LSD only toxic at a
similar concentration to vitamin A. I imagine that being non-toxic,
requiring a minute dose, and the infrequency of that dose makes this
type of treatment extremely safe. This is in contrast to the
established treatments.

Neither myself or any of the other sufferers that have been using this
treatment are qualified to operate a study. The reason for this email
is that I believe a study would be very worthwhile, and beneficial to
millions of cluster headache sufferers, and billions of migraine

I think that if we could prove the effectiveness of these treatments,
they would gather momentum in much the same way THC has for MS

Hope this is of interest.

Craig Adams

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