Just one dose of magic mushrooms can ease anxiety and depression for five YEARS in cancer patients, study suggests



Just one dose of magic mushrooms can ease anxiety and depression for five YEARS in cancer patients, study suggests


Daily Mail


Taking a single dose of a compound found in magic mushrooms can reduce anxiety and depression in cancer patients, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that patients who took psilocybin felt more hopeful, less demoralized and were less afraid of dying. 

What’s more, when combined with psychotherapy sessions, these improvements were seen more than four years after first taking the compound.

The team, from New York University Grossman School of Medicine, says the findings provide evidence that magic mushrooms could be a treatment for mental health issues among cancer patients, and even help push legalization of the drug. 

A new study from New York University Grossman School of Medicine has found that cancer patients who took one dose of psilocybin, the compound found in magic mushrooms (above), had more positive feelings and less death anxiety


Psilocybin is a naturally-occurring hallucinogenic that is produced by more than 200 species of mushrooms. 


It induces feelings of euphoria and sensory distortion similar to drugs such as Lysergic acid diethyla, or LSD.

The compound is classified by the Drug Enforcement Agency as a schedule-I controlled substance, meaning it has no medicinal properties.

The research is a followup of the team’s 2016 study, in which 29 cancer patients who had symptoms of depression and/or anxiety were either given a single, one-time dose of psilocybin or a placebo.

After seven weeks, they swapped treatments This was all done as they attended sessions of psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy. 

Six months later, up to 80 percent of patients say they had reduced feelings of depression and anxiety. 

‘These results may shed light on how the positive effects of a single dose of psilocybin persist for so long,’ said lead author of the new study and co-author of the 2016 study Gabby Agin-Liebes, a PhD candidate at Palo Alto University in California.

‘The drug seems to facilitate a deep, meaningful experience that stays with a person and can fundamentally change his or her mindset and outlook.; 


For the new study, published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology, the team recruited 15 of the original participants. 

They were followed 3.2 and 4.5 years after first taking the compound, and more than 70 percent said they were still experiencing improvements in cancer-related anxiety and depression and ‘positive life changes’ 

Participants also described how the treatment had changed them in more anecdotal terms. 

One wrote of their experience after taking psilocybin: ‘It has given me a different perspective on my life and has helped me to move on with my life and not focus on the possibility of cancer recurring,’ according to Newsweek.

The mechanisms behind the drug aren’t clear, but the team suggests that psilocybin could lead to neuroplasticity, the ability of the brain to form new neural connections throughout life.

The researchers say that about 40 percent of people worldwide will be diagnosed cancer in their lifetime, and one-third will develop anxiety or depression related to their disease.

Past studies have found that this leads to a rise in suicide rates, lower survival rates and an overall poorer quality of life.

Dr Stephen Ross, an associate professor of psychiatry at NYU Langone Health, says that conventional drugs only work for about half of cancer patients, meaning an alternative is imperative.

‘Our findings strongly suggest that psilocybin therapy is a promising means of improving the emotional, psychological, and spiritual well-being of patients with life-threatening cancer,’ he said. 

‘This could profoundly transform the psycho-oncologic care of patients with cancer, and importantly could be used in hospice settings to help terminally ill cancer patients approach death with improved emotional and spiritual well-being.’ 









Up to £10k of cannabis seized from Alexandria industrial unit



Up to £10k of cannabis seized from Alexandria industrial unit


Peter Horne pled guilty to being involved in the supply of the class B drug.


Up to £10,000 of cannabis was seized from an industrial unit in Alexandria.

Peter Horne appeared at Dumbarton Sheriff Court last week admitting being concerned in the supply of the class B drug from the shipping container-style units while he was on bail.

It was heard that a book entitled “marijuana horticultural” was also recovered when police went to raid the North Street property last March 8.

Procurator fiscal depute Kevin Docherty told the court the upper container which police had a warrant to search belonged to Horne.

He explained: “There was a bed in the corner along with several drawer units in which the drugs were found.


On March 8, police received confidential information that drugs may be within storage containers and a search warrant was obtained.


“At about 2.20pm, officers attended at the premises and gained entry to the upper container finding Horne and others within.

“There was a strong smell of cannabis.”

During a systematic search, several bags of herbal material were found, some of smaller quantities within bigger bags. There was also two sets of scales and polythene bags discovered as well as a book called “marijuana horticultural”.

In total, 1kg of cannabis was found “with a value of between £6000 and £10,000”.


Mr Docherty added: “That’s far in excess of that for personal use. Other drug paraphernalia bolsters that opinion.”

The fiscal depute confirmed fingerprints belonging to Horne, 37, were found on the outer surface of the bag containing 16 smaller bags.

Horne’s defence lawyer said: “He has had a long term cannabis habit which is reflected in his record.

“He had sought assistance from addiction agencies without a great deal of success and has recently been contacted by his GP and quite properly recommended to stop self medicating with cannabis for stress and anxiety.”

Expressing concern that dad-of-four Horne’s criminal record stretches to “three and a half pages”, Sheriff Maxwell Hendry deferred sentencing.

Horne, from Bencloich Road, Lennoxtown will be back in court in March but he has been bailed in the meantime.








Bungling drug dealer leaves bag of cannabis and scales in taxi




Bungling drug dealer leaves bag of cannabis and scales in taxi


Daniel Taylor forgot his dope





A bungling cannabis dealer was brought to justice after leaving a bag of dope in a taxi.

And when forgetful Daniel Taylor realised what he had done, he sent a panicked text message to his customers.

“I’m ******,” it read.


Handing the 24-year-old a suspended jail sentence, Judge Nirmal Shant QC said: “It is plain you have been a consumer of cannabis for a considerable amount of time.

“The offence crosses the custodial threshold but the real question is whether I can suspend the sentence and I have to say you have come very close to being sent to prison today.

“But I am just persuaded that I can suspend your sentence and this should enable you to carry on working and supporting your family.”


Part-time chef Taylor, from Staveley, near Chesterfield, is due to become a father later this year.



What happened?


Sarah Slater, prosecuting, at Derby Crown Court, said the incident took place on March 9, last year.

She said Taylorcalled for a taxi at around 6.30pm which took him to his destination in Eckington.

He alighted after paying the fare and the cabbie drove off.


But Taylor, a part-time chef, soon realised he had left his bag inside the car.

Miss Slater said: “He contacted the taxi control centre who called the driver who confirmed to them the bag was inside the car.

“The driver took it back to the control office where they realised there must be a substantial amount of cannabis in there because of the strong smell coming from it.

“They called the police who were at the taxi office when the defendant came to collect it and arrested him.”


Miss Slater said inside the bag were 28 wraps of cannabis, a cannabis grinder and some digital scales.

She said a mobile phone was also taken from him and analysed.


‘I’m ******’


On it was a message from a customer requesting ounce deals and another he had sent out which read: “I have left all my cannabis in the taxi, I’m ******”.

Miss Slater said: “In his interview he said the drugs were for his own personal use.”

Bit he later pleaded guilty to possession with intent to supply a class B drug.


Taylor, of Cromford Drive, was handed a nine-month jail term, suspended for two years.

He was also ordered to carry out 120 hours unpaid work, eight rehabilitation activity requirement days and a three-month drug assessment.

Annette Thomas, mitigating, said: “He is a trained chef who is working part-time at the moment but hopes to make his employment full-time.

“His partner is due to give birth to their little girl later this year and will find out next week if he has secure accommodation where he can start a home next week.”






New Zealand’s adult-use cannabis referendum is set for September



New Zealand’s adult-use cannabis referendum is set for September


New Zealand has scheduled a date for its next general election, which will coincide with a referendum on the legalization of recreational cannabis.

On Sept. 19, New Zealanders will be asked to answer the straightforward question, “Do you support the proposed Cannabis Legalization and Control Bill?”

Two options will be on the ballot:



  • “Yes, I support the proposed Cannabis Legalization and Control Bill.”
  • “No, I do not support the proposed Cannabis Legalization and Control Bill.”



In December, the first draft bill was released to the public outlining a wide range of business opportunities if the country voted to overturn adult-use cannabis prohibition, including those related to cultivation, manufacture and retail.


The final draft bill is expected to be released “in early 2020,” which will contain more detail and take into account public and industry feedback.

“The government is publishing a draft bill at this point to ensure that New Zealanders are informed about the direction being taken and the decisions that have been made to date,” according to the referendum website.


The current government has said the vote is binding, but opposition parties seem less committed, according to industry sources.

“It’s still unclear just how binding it really is. Even the current government says that it will be up to the new government to work through when and how it implements the legislation,” Manu Caddie, CEO of Rua Bioscience, said in a phone interview with Marijuana Business Daily.


“I think it would be brave to ignore (the referendum result) if there is strong public support,” he said. “But it could be close, which would give room to wriggle out of it.”

If more than 50% of ballots are in favor of the draft legalization bill, the incoming government would be responsible for formally introducing a bill to Parliament.

The referendum is a wholly separate matter from the new medical cannabis scheme, which takes effect April 1.

The first draft Cannabis Legalization and Control Bill is available here.





Huddersfield dad caught with £16,000 cannabis farm avoids jail



Huddersfield dad caught with £16,000 cannabis farm avoids jail


Derran Johnson said the farm was for his own personal use


A Huddersfield dad who was caught with a cannabis farm worth up to £16,000 has avoided jail.

Derran Johnson grew the plants at a flat on Fernside Crescent in Almondbury for his own personal use.

Leeds Crown Court was told police were called after Johnson and his partner were having issues at the flat on April 23, 2018.

Prosecutor Carmel Pearson said an occupant spoke to officers before they discovered a cannabis farm inside the property.

There were 13 larger plants and 16 smaller plants, lights and reflective material but the electricity meter had not been bypassed.

She said Johnson was arrested due to his links to the property and admitted the offending in his interview.


Miss Pearson said the plants were capable of yielding canabis with a street value of up to £16,000.

She said there was no explain for why the police had not brought the case to court sooner.


he 28-year-old, of Fernside Crescent in Almondbury, Huddersfield, pleaded guilty to production of a class B drug.

He has six previous convictions for eight offences, including for assault and affray.

Kara Frith, mitigating, said her client is a long-term cannabis user who did not like the situations and places he got himself into to acquire the drug and thought he could save money by growing his own.

She said his first attempt at growing it had failed so he bought more cuttings and tried again.

Probation officer Mick Berry said Johnson is still using cannabis up to four times per week but regrets growing his own.

He said Johnson has three children from a previous relationship and is due to start a two-day work trial next week.

Johnson was handed a nine-month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, with requirements to complete 80 hours of unpaid work and 10 days of rehabilitation activity.






Campaign seeks to protect UK’s booming CBD industry from enforcement



Campaign seeks to protect UK’s booming CBD industry from enforcement


The UK’s Cannabis Trades Association (CTA) is launching a “systematic campaign of political and media engagement” designed to “keep the pressure” on the Foods Standards Agency (FSA) not to withdraw CBD products from shelves, as a result of last year’s Novel Food classification.



Any such enforcement could hit millions of consumers who regularly use CBD products, the CTA said.

The announcement follows a letter from the FSA’s head of food safety policy Michael Wight, to the Cannabis Trades Association, which said: “The FSA has no current plans to immediately withdraw CBD products from the shelves but retains the right to change this stance if new evidence is produced that concludes CBD is not safe, or for any other relevant reason.” 

Last January the European Commission re-classified all CBD sold as food or food supplements (including CBD oil) as “novel”. 

According to the European Commission, novel food is defined as food “that had not been consumed to a significant degree by humans in the EU before 15 May 1997, when the first Regulation on novel food came into force”.


The novel food ruling does not apply to non-food products such as vapes, medicinal products and cosmetics.

European member states were left to decide on how to enforce regulation of CBD.


The reclassification means that manufacturers and distributors wanting to sell CBD food products should apply for novel food authorisation from the European Commission. CBD products that have not been granted such authorisation are technically at risk of enforcement action. 

In the UK, where shoppers are already spending more than £300m a year on a wide range of CBD products, the FSA has been seeking a “proportionate way forward by working with local authorities, businesses and consumers to clarify how to achieve compliance in the marketplace in a proportionate manner”.

Responding to the FSA’s letter, CTA chairman Mike Harlington said: “It seems clear to us from our direct communication with the FSA, and from correspondence between them and other interested parties shown to us, that they acknowledge that the information available does not suggest any significant safety concerns related to CBD products. I believe that this should be a source of some reassurance to the members of our trade association and the industry as a whole.


“CBD products are used by millions of consumers across the country on a daily basis. They simply wouldn’t use them if they didn’t think it helped their quality of life. We are committed to making sure that the CBD industry operates to the highest standards.


“Politicians and regulators need to understand the importance of these products to individual consumers and the importance of a vibrant and successful CBD industry to the UK economy.

“Enforcing the provisions of Novel Foods would be a draconian move and be a devastating blow for millions of UK consumers. For that reason, the Association is launching an intensive and systematic programme of lobbying on this issue,” he added.





Police find £125k of cannabis in Mercedes on slip road



Police find £125k of cannabis in Mercedes on slip road


An officer made the discovery on his way home from work




Police found £125,000 worth of cannabis in the back of a Mercedes on a busy slip road.

An officer from South Wales Police was on his way home from work when he made the discovery on Western Avenue in Cardiff on Thursday, January 23.

A quick search of a Mercedes Vito vehicle revealed large vacuum packs of cannabis worth an estimated £125,000.

A 35-year-old man and a 24-year-old, were both charged with possession with intent to supply cannabis and being concerned in the production of cannabis.


The seizure was part of OpSpectre, a team of officers from South Wales Police tackling knife crime and associated issues of serious violence and illegal drugs.

Over the last seven months, the Cardiff OpSpectre team have arrested more than 220 people, seized more than 70 weapons and carried out nearly 550 stop searches.


The work of OpSpectre, named after a national initiative led by the Metropolitan Police, includes both targeted operations and engagement and education to reassure young people they are safer not carrying knives.








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