Vollenweider Hasler

Fakultäten » Medizinische Fakultät » Psychiatrische Universitätsklinik » Psychiatrie, Psychotherapie und Psychosomatik, Klinik für » Prof. Dr. Daniel Hell (emeritiert) » Vollenweider Hasler

Completed research project

Title / Titel Effects of psilocybin on cognitive functions and psychological measures. A double-blind placebo-controlled dose-effect study in man.
PDF Abstract (PDF, 14 KB)
Summary / Zusammenfassung We recently demonstrated that the classic hallucinogen psilocybin produces perceptual disturbances and psychosis-like positive symptoms via stimulation of 5-HT2A receptors (Vollenweider et al, 1998). Moreover, recent animal studies also suggest that the integrity of the 5-HT2A receptor system is also critical in cognitive functions such as attention and spatial working memory (Williams et al, 2002). However, the effect of the psilocybin on higher cognitive functions has not yet been established in humans.

This study aims to investigate the relationships between psilocybin-induced psycho(patho)logical alterations and cognitive performance. Dose-dependent effects of psilocybin on vigilance, attention, memory functions, associate learning and strategic planning are assessed by use of neuropsychological tasks from the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB). Influence of psilocybin on decision making is investigated by use of a computerized two-choice prediction task (Paulus et al, 2000), and subjective psilocybin effects are depicted by use of the altered states of consciousness questionnaire "5-D ASC". Application of the "Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale" (PANSS) on our subjects aims to collect empirical data for critical evaluation of the psilocybin modelpsychosis paradigm.
Publications / Publikationen Hasler F, Dobricki M, Grimberg U, Vollenweider FX (2003) Cognitive and psychopathological aspects of the 5-HT2A model of experimental psychosis. Proceedings of the 2003 Summer Meeting of the British Association for Psychopharmacology; GB-Cambridge, 20.-23.7.2003 (Abstract in J Psychopharmacology 17: A44)
Keywords / Suchbegriffe Keywords: cognition, 5-HT2 A receptor, psilocybin, psychopathology, CANTAB, serotonin, neuropsychology
Project leadership and contacts /
Projektleitung und Kontakte
Prof. Dr. FX Vollenweider (Project Leader)
Dr. F Hasler (Project Leader)
Funding source(s) /
Unterstützt durch
Heffter Research Institute (HRI), USA, BAG Switzerland
In collaboration with /
In Zusammenarbeit mit
Prof. M. Paulus, Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego United States
Prof. T. Robbins, Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Cambridge United Kingdom
Duration of Project / Projektdauer Jan 2005 to Aug 2008