In one recent trial the effects of Psilocybin (the active ingredient in 'magic mushrooms') was tested on sufferers of severe depression:
A clinical trial, which took years and significant money to complete due to the stringent regulatory restrictions imposed around the class 1 drug, has found that two doses of psilocybin, the active substance in the mushrooms, was sufficient to lift resistant depression in all 12 volunteers for three weeks, and to keep it away in five of them for three months.
https://www.theguardian.com/science/201 ... ical-trial
MDMA has proven effective in the treatment of trauma and PTSD, but:
Horror stories of brain damage were invented and the few deaths massively publicised in relation to the harms of MDMA compared with other drugs such as alcohol. This campaign worked and ecstasy was banned across the globe at the end of the 1980s, despite eloquent and compelling protestations from the many therapists that had used it and patients who had benefited.
Fortunately, (in my view) David Nutt is prepared to discard some of the stigma and look for the evidence:
In light of these successes we have begun to treat people who have become alcohol dependent with MDMA in an attempt to deaden the mental pain of prior traumas. Such individuals are very common, indeed the norm, in alcohol treatment services and have a massively high failure rate with conventional abstinence-based treatments. Less than a quarter stay dry for three months, while those who carry on drinking for the rest of their lives have their life expectancy cut by 20 years. So far we have treated five people with the standard Maps protocol of two MDMA sessions two weeks apart, as part of the standard post-detox follow-up sessions. Up to this point all have stayed abstinent for the duration of the trial, which is still recruiting and will finally report next summer. We hope the early successes continue.
https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/md ... 43031.html