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PANEL: UW Psilocybin Pharmacokinetics Study: Study Volunteers Discussion
Mazdak Bradberry, Diane Byler, Steve E., Geoff Gilpin, Day Host-Jablonski, Chip Brown, and Karen Cooper (Moderator)
Saturday, April 22, 2017 • 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM • Grand Ballroom

In 2014-2015, a Phase I clinical trial of oral psilocybin in healthy adult volunteers was conducted at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Pharmacy. This study sought to rigorously establish pharmacokinetic parameters in support of ongoing Phase II and Phase III of oral psilocybin for refractory depression and anxiety in patients with terminal cancer. The primary measures of the study were the plasma concentrations and area under the curve (AUC) of psilocin in plasma following single doses of 0.3, 0.45, and 0.6 mg/kg psilocybin. Volunteers underwent extensive medical and psychological screening as part of the selection process. All participants (n = 12) underwent at least 6 hours of preparatory therapy with two trained guides, who were also present during each 8-hour psilocybin session. Participants were asked to complete the States of Consciousness Questionnaire shortly after each of their psilocybin sessions and before meeting with the same guides the following morning. The final study visit was completed approximately 1 month after the final session and included the Persisting Effects Questionnaire and a short interview. In this panel discussion, several study participants will share their experiences. The goal of the presentation is to provide a window into psilocybin therapy from a study participant's perspective. The panel discussion will be moderated by Karen M. Cooper, principal guide and trainer for the study. Topics to be discussed include: study logistics, set and setting, content and importance of preparatory sessions, acute and lasting cognitive and emotional effects, perceived effectiveness of the therapeutic model, and insights gained. Disclosures: One panel member is currently a graduate student at UW-Madison. The moderator and remaining panel members are not currently affiliated with the University of Wisconsin. The presentation is not sponsored or endorsed by the University of Wisconsin or any affiliated organizations.

 

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Mazdak Bradberry is an M.D./Ph.D. student at the University of Wisconsin Medical Scientist Training Program. His Ph.D. research, conducted under advisor Dr. Ed Chapman, focuses on molecular mechanisms of neurotransmitter release. Clinically, his interests lie in pediatric neurology and factors underlying healthy brain development. Originally from New Haven, Connecticut by way of Pittsburgh and Evanston, his other interests include music, modernity, and the construction of conscious experience.

 

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Diane Byler Diane Byler is a Vice President & Loan Officer for the Wisconsin Business Development Finance Corporation in Madison, WI. Diane wrote a personal mission statement in college, and it has guided the way she lives: "Affect others in a Positive Way and Experience all I can in life!" Diane is also a mother to two teenage boys and an adventurer. She has skydived multiple times, earned a pilot's license, scuba dived, bungie jumped out of a hot air balloon, and traveled extensively.

 

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Karen Cooper, R.N., B.S.N., M.A., was Lead Guide and Clinical Research Nurse for the University of Wisconsin’s Psilocybin Pharmacokinetic Study, and served as the study trainer with the Usona Institute. She currently enjoys serving as mentor, guest faculty, and member of the Advisory Board for the Certificate in Psychedelic Therapies and Research program at California Institute of Integral Studies, and is the Project Manager and Co-therapist for the anticipated MAPS-sponsored Phase III clinical trial of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD at the clinical study site in Fort Collins, Colorado. Karen’s Master’s in Holistic Health Education at John F. Kennedy University included a focus on transpersonal and psychosomatic psychology; she’s a student of meditation and yoga, a Licensed Bodyworker and Massage Therapist; she finds that an eclectic nursing background working with patients ranging from prenatal and neonates to end-of-life hospice lends well to her love for lifelong learning of science, consciousness, psychology, and spirituality. Outside interests include learning about Colorado native plants, herbs, and food as medicine; biking and hiking, ecstatic dance, painting, exploring the natural beauty of her new home in Northern Colorado with husband Dan Muller, and the wondrous path of being a grandma.

 

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Steve E. is the founder and executive director of OmTerra. OmTerra is a forming non-profit created to help foster the promotion, education and outreach for psychedelic therapy. OmTerra hosts the annual Driftless Psychedelic Therapy Symposium in Viroqua, WI. Steve is also a Sales Manager for a medical device company, a father to four beautiful children and a lover of life.

 

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Geoff Gilpin is an author, editor, and software developer based in Madison, WI. His memoir The Maharishi Effect: A Personal Journey Through the Movement that Transformed American Spirituality was published by Tarcher/Penguin. Before earning an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Goucher College, Geoff was the co-owner and Vice President of Software Resource Publications, a computer services and consulting firm. His current project is a book about psychedelic research.

 

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Day Host-Jablonski is an Emergence Medic and Radical Perfumer from Madison, WIsconsin. She uses empathic embodiment, deep listening and mythic storymaking to meet the spiritual urgency of modern times. She teaches workshops on herbal self-care, composes custom aromatic remedies, and explores inner and outer wildernesses.

 

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Chip Brown is an attorney, archeologist, and historian. He is a practicing Pagan/Shaman who is incorporating spiritual elements of his ancestral background into his work. Chip is interested in altered states of consciousness through such means as sound, meditation, and entheogens. Chip is also interested in indigenous cultures and has a broad ethnic ancestry including Native American, North and South African, Middle Eastern, South Asian, West Asian, Melanesian, Eastern and Western European and Scandinavian.

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