Through EmpathBio, ATAI Life Sciences says it will develop “safer” MDMA derivatives for patients with PTSD and calls the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies’ (MAPS) approach “MDMA 1.0.” MAPS’ executive director, Rick Doblin, says that if that’s the case, ATAI is “MDMA 0.5.”
Earlier this year, Psymposia published a story titled, Christian Angermayer’s ATAI Life Sciences is positioned to take the psychedelic throne from MAPS. In this article, we detailed how executives from for-profit companies are quick to point to the advances in psychedelic science made by nonprofits, allowing their venture-backed companies to speculate on the so-called “psychedelic renaissance.” A recent announcement from ATAI Life Sciences indicates that the company is moving closer to MAPS’ hallowed ground of MDMA research.
ATAI has added EmpathBio to their portfolio of psychedelic drug companies. Piggybacking on MAPS’ research from the last three decades, EmpathBio plans to develop MDMA derivatives to treat patients with PTSD.
An Endpoints News article highlighting an interview with ATAI’s Chief Scientific Officer, Srinivas Rao, characterized MAPS’ approach to treatment with MDMA as “MDMA 1.0.” The author of the article, Jason Mast, told Psymposia that this characterization came “from the ATAI folks.” Rao explained that ATAI sees a problem in the fact that, under MAPS’ model, MDMA must be administered over multiple days, with patients being supervised for hours by trained professionals.
Read their full report