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Pilotstudie för naturmedicinsk ALS behandling

Pågående icke-klinisk studie – Antal deltagare: 34 (Sverige, USA, Belgien, Finland, Storbritannien, Turkiet, Brasilien, Italien, Kanada, Ryssland, Australien, Indien, Argentina, Colombia, Kroatien, Singapore)

Senast uppdaterad: September 2018

Återkommande frågor angående websajtens ämne har gett upphov till ett projekt med syfte att uppmuntra neuromedicinsk forskning att kartlägga potentialen för ayahuasca inom ALS-behandling, och att förmedla kännedom kring dessa medicinalväxter.

En växande grupp individer bidrar tillsammans med underlag till denna pilotstudie som förhoppningsvis kommer att utgöra underlag för att motivera mer utförliga och områdesspecifika kliniska studier.

Överväger du att prova ayahuasca i syfte att egenhändigt behandla någon av dessa sjukdomar?

  • ALS eller annan typ av motorneuronsjukdom
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Parkinson’s
  • Multipel Skleros
  • Annan neurologisk sjukdom

Du kan hjälpa genom att bidra med din personliga utvärdering för att vidareutveckla projektet och pådriva ytterligare studier inom naturmedicinsk neurologi. Dokumentationen kommer att tillgängliggöras för neuromedicinska och etnobotaniska organisationer och publikationer.

Featured image

I skrivande stund deltar 34 patienter med ALS-diagnos från sexton olika länder i studien. Långsiktig uppföljning av de som svarar positivt på behandlingen sker efter överenskommelse.

Detta är ett ideellt projekt där frivilliga deltagare har möjligheten att påverka forskning och utveckling av neurologiska och naturmedicinska behandlingsformer.

Alla detaljer och frågor diskuteras via e-post. Vid intresse att medverka i studien bör grundläggande information bifogas enligt nedanstående lista.

Vänligen kontakta:
ayahuascatreatment@hotmail.com

Inkludera följande:

  • Namn och ålder
  • Datum för diagnos
  • Symptomhistorik
  • Kommunikation – är talförmågan påverkad?
  • Andnings- eller sväljsvårigheter?
  • Rörlighet – Normal gångförmåga eller behov av assistans?
  • Mediciner – Vilka (om några) används för tillfället och är det möjligt att avstå från dessa eller reducera användningen av dem vid behov?
  • Diet – Bifoga en förteckning över all förtärd mat och dryck under 1-2 genomsnittliga dagar för att avgöra eventuellt nödvändiga justeringerar i samband med behandling

Det är viktigt att förtydliga att detta är en icke-klinisk studie, baserad på nätverkande och utbyte av information mellan vuxna människor som frivilligt medverkar. Att medverka innebär fullt eget hälsomässigt ansvar för eventuella konsekvenser av informationen som förmedlas.

Tack till alla som medverkar. Ni gör många en stor tjänst genom att utforska nya möjligheter och dela era erfarenheter kring dessa.

Mer information och uppdateringar följer.

 

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Ayahuasca – Medicina etnobotânica para um potencial tratamento de Esclerose Lateral Amiotrófica

tradução do texto contido em: https://ayahuascatreatment.wordpress.com/2014/09/01/ayahuasca-ethnobotanical-medicine-for-treatment-of-als/

Por Daniel Gustafsson

Este artigo é o resultado de seis anos de trabalho, estudando a medicina etnobotânica e o campo das neuropatias, criando conexões entre elas na busca de uma opção viável de tratamento para ELA – Esclerose Lateral Amiotrófica, e condições neurodegenerativas semelhantes.

Povos nativos das Américas do Sul e Central, pertencentes a diversas tribos instaladas na Floresta Amazônica, carregam consigo uma antiga tradição de consumo de um remédio/chá natural conhecido por ayahuasca. Ele é feito basicamente de uma espécie de videira selvagem conhecida por Jagube ou Mariri (Banisteriopsis caapi). Frequentemente, mas não sempre, folhas de árvores conhecidas por Chacruna ou Chaliponga (Psychotria viridis e Diplopterys cabrerana) são adicionadas ao chá. Em algumas regiões, adiciona-se a casca da arvore Jurema (da família Leguminosae e gênero Mimosa).

Caapi planta que cresce na selva amazônica

Grandes florestas, como a Amazônica, são claramente entendidas como uma enorme fonte de recursos naturais e também como entidades fundamentais para a sustentação do ecossistema do planeta. Estima-se que nelas exista ainda uma grande quantidade de plantas desconhecidas e de grande valor medicinal, ainda por serem exploradas. Muitos remédios farmacêuticos convencionais da atualidade são originários de substâncias encontradas nessas florestas e, posteriormente, sintetizados em laboratório.

Não é de hoje que os etnofarmacologistas estão conscientes de que existe na Ayahuasca um valor como agente medicinal no tratamento de diversas doenças, mas até recentemente este argumento estava sendo defendido por poucos indivíduos dentro deste meio. Ainda que já houvesse registro de vários casos, e muitos deles dignos de credibilidade, ainda faltavam estudos mais sérios sobre o assunto.

No entanto, este cenário começou a mudar nos últimos anos. Substâncias naturais extraídas das plantas da Ayahuasca demonstraram possuir propriedades restaurativas e fortemente antioxidantes em células nervosas específicas no cérebro e no sistema nervoso central – controlando a neurotransmissão, a atividade motora, a memória e a coordenação. Com isso, as evidências tornam-se favoráveis à teoria de que a Ayahuasca poderia promover tratamento eficaz para doenças neurodegenerativas como ELA, Alzheimer e Parkinson. Outros resultados promissores têm sido obtidos pelo estudo da psilocibina, substância cuja estrutura é bastante próxima a de substâncias encontradas na Ayahuaca, sob o aspecto molecular, e é encontrada naturalmente em certas espécies de cogumelos medicinais consumidos em povos indígenas nos quais também é comum o consumo de Ayahuasca.

Segundo o Dr. Juan Ramos, chefe do departamento de doenças neurológicas na Universidade da Flórida do Sul, EUA, estudos preliminares mostram que estas substâncias estimulam o desenvolvimento de novas células nas áreas cerebrais. Comprovar o potencial de cura, dada pela restauração completa das células danificadas ou destruídas, ainda é algo que está por acontecer, mas os primeiros resultados já demonstram o potencial dessa abordagem. Há também um crescente interesse em explorar as propriedades regenerativas dessas plantas em pesquisas relacionadas a danos à medula espinhal. Pesquisadores de câncer também demonstram interesse no B. Caapi, uma vez que seus diferentes alcalóides se mostraram eficazes contra o crescimento de células cancerígenas.

Eduardo E. Schenberg, Universidade Federal de São Paulo:

Existem suficientes evidências que os princípios ativos da Ayahuasca, especialmente o DMT e a harmine, têm efeitos positivos em algumas culturas de células utilizadas para o estudo do câncer e em processos bioquímicos importantes no tratamento do câncer, tanto in vitro como in vivo, e por isso, os poucos relatos disponíveis de pessoas que beneficiaram da Ayahuasca nas suas experiências de tratamento do câncer deviam ser levadas a sério, e a hipótese apresentada aqui que pode ser completamente testada através de uma experimentação cientifica rigorosa, que ajude a entender os casos disponíveis e pavimentar o caminho para novas experiências.

Um recente estudo da Icahn School of Medicine, de Nova York, destacou a harmina (encontrada no cipó Mariri, da Ayahuasca) entre 100 mil substâncias, como sendo a única capaz de promover regeneração em células-beta do pâncreas (que produzem a insulina), uma descoberta de grande interesse nas pesquisas contra a diabetes. Outras evidências sugerem que a Ayahuasca possa ter poder de regeneração para vários tipos diferentes de células de diversas partes do corpo, demandando pesquisas em diferentes áreas de especialização da medicina, e em especial as relacionadas à doenças neurodegenerativas, das quais ainda descohece-se a cura.

Anteriormente, o uso de Ayahuasca era tido como um tema controverso, dado que a ciência ocidental tradicional entendia a planta como um simples alucinógeno. Em outras palavras, plantas medicinais como esta, de grande importância, foram por muito tempo negligenciadas pela comunidade científica e tomadas como meras drogas naturais. Um termo mais correto para essas plantas, no que diz respeito à cultura indígena, da qual a Ayahuasca faz parte, seria o de “enteógeno” – que significa que a planta é utilizada em um contexto sagrado pelo povo nativo, induzindo os participantes a experiências sagradas. Em diversos países, como o Peru, a Ayahuasca é legalizada e aceita como agente complementar à medicina, e nesses últimos 10 anos, a cultura ocidental têm progressivamente percebido sua postura pouco fundamentada e rasa com relação a enteógenos como a Ayahuasca, na medida que mais e mais estudos sobre plantas enteogênicas são finalizados com resultados positivos.

Juntamente com uma série de outros alcalóides similares ao da harmala, encontrados no cipó B. Caapi, harmalina é um inibidor de monoamina oxidase. Monoamina oxidase (MAO) é uma enzima produzida pelo corpo capaz de realizar a quebra de neurotransmissores (como a serotonina). A inibição de MAO permite que o neurotransmissor permaneça na sinapse por um período maior. Muitos antidepressivos atuam de maneira semelhante, estimulando os receptores em determinadas áreas. No entanto, os alcalóides presentes na Ayahuasca não devem ser comparados a antidepressivos; eles são diferentes, embora ambos tenham a habilidade de afetar os mesmos receptores. Como analogia, podemos dizer que os alcalóides presentes em B. Caapi e os antidepressivos utilizam o mesmo serviço de entrega de mensagens, mas carregando mensagens diferentes. As propriedades bioquímicas das plantas usadas na Ayahuasca, bem como seus efeitos sistêmicos nas diversas funções corpóreas, no momento podem ser atribuídos tão somente a essas plantas.

harmaline_3d_mid

Harmalina em conjunto com a harmina e tetrahidroharmina, todas elas são formas de inibidores da enzima MAO – são os componentes principais da planta medicinal Banisteropis caapi.

molecules

Comparação entre moléculas de dimetiltriptamina, psilocina e serotonina (psilocibina é o precursor da psilocina)

É provado que a Ayahuasca em si é inofensiva, não havendo toxicidade em seus componentes, embora sejam comuns efeitos colaterais temporários como náusea e vertigens após o consumo. No entanto, a associação de certas drogas medicinais a MAO-inibidores (como os encontrados na Ayahuasca) é perigosa, de modo que esta última não deve ser combinada com nenhuma droga medicinal contraindicada; Pessoas que sofrem de diabetes, epilepsia ou pressão alta são aconselhadas a interromper seu tratamento. Os efeitos colaterais – um tanto desconfortáveis – da Ayahuasca, são diretamente proporcionais à quantidade ingerida, e pequenas quantidades consumidas para fins medicinais devem produzir ao usuário pouca (ou nenhuma) experiência destes efeitos colaterais.

Ao buscarmos informações sobre Ayahuasca, alguns poucos artigos negativos podem ser encontrados, alguns com fortes apelos emocionais (o que é compreensível), pois contam histórias de turistas desafortunados que, por conta própria ou convencidos a tal, beberam algo a mais do que apenas Ayahuasca – a saber, a planta tóxica datura – com sérios prejuízos à saúde (incluindo óbito em alguns poucos casos conhecidos). Esse tipo de relato conduz as pessoas ao medo e à desinformação, e não só é trágico para o usuário cuja saúde fora prejudicada e sua família, como também à comunidade de medicina natural que está tentando promover o uso medicinal com segurança e responsabilidade, buscando benefícios e tratamentos para doenças que a medicina tradicional falha em tentar prover. Manchetes sensacionalistas que produzem informação infundadas, escritas por pessoas sem qualquer conhecimento sobre medicina etnobotânica, defiitivamente não ajudam de maneira alguma os pacientes de ELA e outras doenças, que procuram por tratamentos viáveis para sua condição. Em diversos países, incluindo Peru, Brasil e Costa Rica, existem centros autorizados que oferecem tratamento à base de Ayahuasca, onde as plantas certas são utilizadas, eventualmente cultivadas de forma orgânica na mesma propriedade e preparada por botânicos experientes.

Um dos mais recentes estudos sobre B. Caapi foi feito em 1920, envolvendo pacientes com doença de Parkinson. Os pacientes perceberam grandes melhoras nos sintomas da doença após as primeiras sessões, mas infelizmente a pesquisa foi descontinuada por falta de investimento, uma vez que as substâncias presentes em plantas naturais não poderiam ser traduzidas em patentes, fugindo portanto aos interesses da indústria farmacêutica.

Como terapia alternativa, é provável que a Ayahuasca ganhe ainda mais atenção nos próximos anos, apesar de já estar bem estabelecida. As descobertas podem levar à produção de uma droga fármaco-terapêutica derivada dessa planta, porém pode ainda levar alguns anos. O processo desde os estudos, passando por tentativas, até um eventual lançamento de uma droga aprovada, feita para o uso no sistema de assistência médica, é lento, por razões óbvias. Um fato interessante é que a Ayahuasca, em sua forma natural, é uma coisa que hoje está disponível, para quem tem falta de opções em outros tratamentos. Para aqueles que querem – e podem – participar de um tratamento alternativo usando Ayauhuasca, a possibilidade de melhoria existe, mesmo que ainda não seja garantida. Como em muitas outras situações análogas, os resultados individuais variam; é necessário ser cauteloso em não alimentar demasiadamente as expectativas das pessoas interessadas enquanto o trabalho ainda estiver em andamento. Ainda há a importância de reforçar as informações a respeito do uso conjugado com medicamentos contra-indicados, minimizando assim os riscos associados. De qualquer modo, ainda que mais estudos sejam esperados, essa é uma informação informação que deve chamar a atenção de muitos que sofrem de uma doença degenerativa progressiva, como é o caso da ELA.

Minha expêriencia pessoal com a doença ocorreu com o falecimento da mãe de uma pessoa muito próxima a mim, devido à ELA, alguns anos atrás. O andamento de sua doença foi rápido, e infelizmente, muitos dos estudos que estão hoje disponíveis, ainda não tinham sido publicados. Isso me levou a investigar a relação entre qualquer medicina natural e o tratamento de doenças neurológicas.

B. Caapi pode ser obtida obtida legalmente na maioria dos países/estados, bem como uma série de outros remédios à base de ervas já conhecidos, assim como Ginkgo Biloba e Ginseng. Entretanto, assim como estes outros potentes suplementos naturais, cabe ao consumidor, usá-los e combiná-los de modo consciente e com responsabilidade. A medicina natural deve sempre ser tratada com muito respeito, assim como as demais drogas da medicina convencional.

B. Caapi growth stages

A substância conhecida como dimetiltriptamina, encontrada em plantas tradicionalmente adicionadas à Ayahuasca, é, entretanto, regulamentada por lei em alguns países, como uma substância controlada. (o que é muito questionável, devido ao seu valor medicinal em múltiplas áreas). A adição dessas plantas secundárias, anteriormente mencionadas, a essa substância em particular, induz ao usuário do preparado a um estado alterado de consciência que é muitas vezes incompreendido e estigmatizado. Esse estado alterado de consciência assemelha-se a um sonho, dado que neste estado estimula-se a memória e a capacidade de se ter pensamentos abstratos; este estado mental carrega, por si mesmo, qualidades auto-terapêuticas. Ainda que a DMT (dimetiltriptamina) seja produzida naturalmente pelo corpo humano, sendo sabido que a tal substância é produzida em pequenas quantidades pela glândula pineal no cérebro durante o sono, a substância permanece ilegal em alguns países do oeste desde os anos sessenta, quando alguns legisladores, prematuramente, criminalizaram muitas substâncias com suspeitas de ter efeitos na mente, incluindo substâncias naturais, devido ao pânico moral que se difundiu na época – Independentemente do fato de que para muitas delas, incluindo o DMT, nunca foi provado que pudessem fazer mal à saúde de alguma maneira, e que, de fato, foram usadas pelos povos indígenas, extraindo-as das plantas, para tratar doenças por séculos e com muito sucesso.

Entretanto, muitos países europeus redefiniram sua política em relação à desaprovação dessas plantas medicinais nesses últimos anos, muito devido a um aumento de consciência e acesso a novas e imparciais informações em relação a essas plantas, assim como às pesquisas feitas até então. Na Escandinávia, o nativo Sami, Urbi Svonni de Sapmi, Suécia, foi recentemente absolvido de todas as acusações no tribunal de justiça, por ter trazido cactus peruano medicinal para o país. O tribunal determinou que o material vegetal natural por si só não pode ser definido como uma substância controlada, e que o trabalho terapêutico que Svonni estava fazendo, que incluiu o cactus Echinopsis pachanoi, não poderia ser de fato um ato criminoso, mas que teria sim, o propósito de ajudar e curar as pessoas. Outro caso semelhante com o mesmo resultado, envolveu plantas Ayahuasca. Cactus das espécies Echinopsis e Lophophora, são conhecidos pelos seus efeitos calmantes e restauradores sobre o sistema nervoso central, e são utilizados como tal, na medicina etnobotânica.

Mais precisamente, a definição da Ayahuasca é, qualquer chá feito ou pela planta Banisteriopsis Caapi sozinha, ou pela planta B.Caapi + plantas adicionais contendo DMT. Um chá feito de B. Caapi sozinho não possui o que algumas vezes nos referimos como qualidades “visionárias”, uma vez que apenas com a adição da DMT extraída das plantas mencionadas, ou pra ser mais exato, a combinação dos alcalóides MAO-inibidores na planta B.Caapi junto com plantas q contenham o DMT é que induz a um estado de espírito erroneamente chamado por alguns de “alucinógeno”. É necessário que se esclareça que essa palavra traz à tona associações negativas às pessoas e acaba, portanto, sendo temida e incompreendida. Diferente do que algumas pessoas costumam pensar, uma pessoa não tem alucinações ou mesmo visões de coisas inexistentes aparecendo em sua frente após consumir Ayahuasca; o que se observa são sequências de “visões” internas, parecidas com as de um sonho, que vão tomando conta da mente e dos pensamentos enquanto a pessoa se encontra acordada, relaxada e plenamente consciente. Esse fenômeno ocorrerá tão somente se uma quantidade significante do chá for consumido. É na verdade bem tranquilo, apesar da eventual vontade de vomitar – um efeito colateral que afeta algumas pessoas.

É aí que se encontra a essência, muitas vezes incompreendida: Uma pessoa não precisa tomar grandes quantidades de Ayahuasca para provar de seus efeitos medicinais – sem o efeitos visionários e abstratos (e até mesmo as náuseas e vômitos). Além disso, vários dos benefícios medicinais para a saúde podem ser obtidos usando-se B. Caapi sozinho, sem nenhuma planta adicional, garantindo assim, que não se tenha efeitos visionários peculiares, sendo então mais aceito. Deve-se notar, porém, que o efeito sinérgico entre as duas plantas utilizadas simultaneamente, trará a melhor resposta corporal e medicinal. Os exageros relacionados à Ayahuasca são os responsáveis por essa planta ter sido tão negligenciada por tantos anos no ocidente, mas a sua reputação tem sido constantemente revisada à medida que mais pessoas com maior conhecimento destas plantas, em um contexto medicinal, vieram a se posicionar, alegando seu verdadeiro valor, aplicável a diversas condições de saúde – sobretudo no campo das doenças neurológicas. A Ayahuasca já foi utilizada com sucesso para o alívio dos sintomas da esclerose múltipla e artrite reumatóide, por um crescente número de pessoas na Europa desde pelo menos 2006. ELA, esclerose múltipla, doença de Alzheimer e doença de Parkinson, possuem muitas características em comum, uma vez que estão relacionadas à degeneração de células nervosas de algum tipo. Assim, é provável que um remédio de amplo espectro, advindo da medicina natural, capaz de afetar o processo de regeneração das células nervosas, e que também tem propriedades antioxidantes e de proteção celular, possa prevenir e retardar o progresso da doença neurológica degenerativa, de modo geral.

Quaisquer histórias estranhas ou assustadoras a respeito da Ayahuasca, que possam estar circulando, derivam em grande maioria das experiências de pessoas que foram viver com tribos nativas durante o final dos anos 80 e início dos anos 90 e fizeram parte do uso tradicional e cerimonial da Ayahuasca – consumindo, de maneira excepcional, quantidades generosas ou concentradas da medicação em questão, com envolvimento em experiências de limpeza profunda, não necessariamente suportáveis com facilidade. Essa medicação deveria ser respeitada como qualquer outra, evitando uso exagerado, pois os efeitos do uso incorreto produzem à substância um estigma, que não colabora com as pesquisas em busca de opções de tratamento. As visões interiores, vívidas e fascinantes, induzidas pelo forte chá, muitas vezes parecem ter um tema enraizado à natureza, como representado muito bem pelo artista peruano Pablo Amaringo (1938-2009). Elas surgem pelo simples fato de que os alcalóides e triptaminas dissolvidos no chá se combinam e afetam os receptores que, por sua vez, estimulam o processamento da memória relativa às imagens e às palavras – processo esse de grande relevância para as pesquisas relacionadas ao mal de Alzheimer.

É provado que a Ayahuasca, não causa dependência. Ao contrário, é usada para curar pessoas de suas dependências com outras drogas, dado seu efeito desintoxicante. Há bastante documentação sobre sua capacidade de ajudar usuários viciados com seus problemas de abstinência.

A inibição da enzima MAO tem como função, entre outras coisas, assegurar que a absorção de dimetiltriptamina possa ocorrer no corpo, o que caso contrário (sem a inibição da enzima MAO), se quebraria no estômago, sendo então incapaz de causar qualquer efeito. A dimetiltriptamina é, sob o aspecto molecular, idêntica à psilocibina. De acordo com o Dr. Ramos, a combinação única de várias harmala-alcalóides da B. Caapi, e dimetiltriptamina, a partir de fontes vegetais adicionais utilizadas na Ayahuasca, funcionam no nível celular, de modo a reparar e restaurar células nervosas, estimular e aumentar a transmissão do neurônio motor, e proteger as células nervosas restantes e outras células de danos por degeneração. Isso, sem dúvida, é muito valioso, tanto no ponto de vista da ciência neurológica, quanto de perspectivas de investigação futuras, como para o câncer.

PLANTAS AYAHUASCA SÃO EMBALADAS E VENDIDAS EM CASAS DE PRODUTOS NATURAIS, NO PERU. REPARE NA TABELA DE IN- FORMAÇÃO E NA DATA DE VALIDADE. VÁRIAS ESTIRPES DESSA VIDEIRA ESTÃO DISPONÍVEIS. CADA UM COM UM PERFIL ALCA- LÓIDE LIGEIRAMENTE DIFERENTE, PORÉM SEMELHANTE.

Como o B. Caapi por si só provou ter qualidades muito positivas e potencialmente eficazes contra doenças neurológicas, isso é algo que pode ser, de fato, uma opção de tratamento alternativo valioso. Para algumas pessoas que possam ter resultados positivos em qualquer grau, mas não vive em um estado ou país onde é permitido o uso de plantas que contêm dimetiltriptamina, existe então a possibilidade de se viajar para um dos muitos países (ou estados) que, por lei, permitem o uso de plantas secundárias adicionadas com as suas propriedades medicinais combinadas, para a avaliação do tratamento completo com Ayahuasca. Na Europa, a Espanha é um dos vários países onde a Ayahuasca já está sendo bem estabelecida como uma terapia alternativa, e foi também o local escolhido para uma conferência internacional em 2014, onde etnofarmacologistas, psicólogos, e pesquisadores de todo o mundo, se reuniram em torno dos temas sobre a Ayahuasca e outros enteógenos.

Entre outros, o PhD em medicina Ede Frescka, da Universidade de Debrecen, dá palestras sobre as possibilidades de se regenerar células do cérebro e regular o sistema de defesa imunológico através deste medicamento à base de plantas, entre outros. Esse evento é realizado pela ICEERS – International Center for Ethnobotanical Education Research and Service, e pode ser visto pelo link:

http://www.aya2014.com/en/confirmed-speakers-2/

Além de sua capacidade para ajudar e melhorar o processo de reparo neural celular e sua proteção contra a oxidação celular, muitas dessas plantas enteogênicas (e fungos), incluindo a Ayahuasca, possuem também qualidades psicoterapêuticas. Lidar com a doença degenerativa é obviamente estressante para os pacientes, e uma grande dose de alívio emocional, uma visão pessoal e capacidade de lidar melhor com a própria situação pessoal é viável, através da experiência única, ou repetida, de plantas medicinais enteógenas, em um ambiente confortável e de apoio, de acordo com a renomada Universidade de medicina John Hopkins.

O fato de que muitas dessas plantas medicinais estão ressurgindo conforme recebem aprovação científica é uma grande notícia sob muitos aspectos. Sustentabilidade e questôes ambientais são alguns destes aspectos, e até agora as perspectivas são positivas. Muitas fazendas orgânicas têm-se desenvolvido nas Américas do Sul e Central, cultivando Ayahuasca tanto para o uso local, quanto para a exportação, fornecendo trabalho e renda para as pessoas das áreas rurais, que de outra forma, estariam lutando contra a pobreza. Isso também dá a chance para muitos locais se reconectarem com seu passado cultural, uma vez que a Ayahuasca é declarada como um patrimônio nacional no Peru, entre outros lugares.

PLANTAÇÃO DE AYAHUASCA SUSTENTÁVEL, NO BRASIL. ESSAS ÁRVORES DA CHACRONA LEVAM VÁRIOS ANOS ATÉ CHEGAREM AO SEU TAMANHO ADULTO DE 2-3 METROS.

Anteriormente desconhecida, essa planta medicinal era completamente ignorada,mas conforme vamos entendendo seu potencial, a negligência dá lugar á sabedoria, e as bases científicas sobre este assunto está se tornando mais firme. As pessoas não devem ser levadas a pensar que se trata de algum tipo de cura milagrosa, mas sim, algo que poderia fornecer uma ajuda a longo prazo, na recuperação da função do corpo e da mente, em pessoas com certas condições neurológicas. Juntos, como uma comunidade, todos podemos ajudar informando as pessoas de uma maneira imparcial, ética e segura sobre todas as opções de tratamentos alternativos viáveis, e sobre o valor terapêutico e medicinal das plantas enteogênicas, em geral.

Atualmente, há um Projeto Piloto internacional em andamento, envolvendo pessoas com diagnóstico de ELA, documentando o uso dessa planta medicinal, a coleta e avaliação dos resultados a serem processados neste momento.

Para acompanhar esse projeto, ou se você está interessado em se tornar um participante, clique no link a seguir:

https://ayahuascatreatment.wordpress.com/2014/09/22/natural-als-treatment-pilot-project/

Historicamete, a Ayahuasca vem sido usada há muito tempo, mas apenas recentemente tem sido usada para tratamentos das condições trazidas nesse artigo. É esperado que qualquer melhoria substancial possa ser mais claramente percebida no longo prazo. Atualizações iniciais de pessoas que participam do projeto piloto ELA relatam algumas coisas em comum; o sentimento de uma gama mais ampla de movimento, alívio de tensões nos músculos e ligeira melhoria na aderência em membros afetados, entretanto deve-se notar que nenhuma dessas pessoas perdeu todo o seu controle muscular antes do tratamento, e que se esses efeitos serão ou não permanentes, ainda não se sabe.

Resumo dos pontos-chave:

A Ayahuasca poderia ser usada efetivamente no tratamento da ELA e outras doenças do neurônio motor, com base em estudos que evidenciam seus efeitos antioxidantes únicos, que parecem proteger o cérebro/células nervosas, tendo como alvo, os neurônios motores através de um sistema de transporte bioquímico único, e que a Ayahuasca e outras substâncias similares em sua estrutura molecular estimulam a regeneração e o desenvolvimento de novas células nervosas/cerebrais. Com os estudos até o momento, percebeu-se uma redução dos sintomas reportados em pacientes de Parkinson. As doenças neurodegenerativas compartilham um terreno em comum, tornando-se assim provável que algo que melhore a condição A possa também ser benéfico para uma condição B. Também existe base em fontes seguras e confiáveis de pessoas que têm utilizado a Ayahuasca para alívio dos sintomas de esclerose múltipla (mais uma vez, o terreno comum das doenças degenerativas) documentada em livros sobre a Ayahuasca e, a partir de descrições de uma melhoria no estágio inicial por pessoas com vários tipos de ELA, agora que participam do projeto de tratamento, já havendo usado tal medicação por um período de tempo.

A Ayahuasca, bem como outros enteógenos, com o tempo obterão a credibilidade que merecem, e trarão novas possibilidades para muitos enfermos de doenças das quais ainda não existem opções convencionais de tratamento. Enquanto isso, estas plantas medicinais permanecem disponíveis para a avaliação pessoal do indivíduo que resolver explorar como opção. Em relação às condições médicas levantadas neste artigo, estas plantas podem ter agir, no futuro, como uma ferramenta poderosa para a reversão da progressão da ELA e doenças relacionadas.

Para apoiar este estudo, use paypal. Qualquer doação, não importa quantidade, ajuda a manter este projeto vivo e a manter este estudo em progresso.

Paypal Destinatário: ayahuascatreatment@hotmail.com

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Referências:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828149/pdf/nihms156585.pdf

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828149/

(Ayahuasca e doenças neurológicas)

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0019264

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110526131244.htm

(Ayahuasca harmala-alcalóides e estudo da doença de Alzheimer)

http://www.sram.org/media/documents/uploads/article_pdfs/5-3-01-Serrano-Duenas.pdf

(B. Caapi e doença de Parkinson)

http://www.stichtingopen.nl/en/component/content/article/research/study-shows-no-evidence-of-adverse-mental-health-effects-in-long-term-ayahuasca-users

http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0042421

( Estudo provando que a Ayahuasca é segura de um ponto de vista saudável, e que não tem efeitos colaterais a longo prazo)

http://smo.sagepub.com/content/1/2050312113508389.full

(Pesquisa sobre Ayahuasca / Cancer)

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2014/07/03/psychedelic-drugs-put-your-brain-in-a-waking-dream-study-finds/

( Estudo da psilocibina mostrando um aumento na função de memória em indivíduos)

http://health.usf.edu/medicine/neurology/faculty/sanchez_ramos.htm

(Perfil do Dr. Juan ramos)

https://youtu.be/eV3l1YIpdik

(pesquisa sobre a psilocibina e o cérebro)

http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0042421

(Estudo provando a ingestão regular de Ayahuasca levando a um aumento a longo prazo de bem-estar e saúde mental, em geral)

http://iceers.org

(ICEERS – International center for ethnobotanical education research and service)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23627784

http://bitnest.ca/external.php?id=%257DbxUgY%255CC%2540%251BD%252A%253A-D%251BU%255BP%2500JIqc%2560%2515T

(Estudos canadenses sobre a Ayahuasca como um tratamento para o abuso de drogas e álcool)

http://www.heffter.org/research-jhus.htm

(Estudos da Universidade John Hopkins sobre os benefícios dos cogumelos medicinais psilocibina)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6682439

(Estudo dos efeitos dos cactos Echinopsis e Lophophora no sistema nervoso central)

http://bioweb.uwlax.edu/bio203/2011/toellner_kayl/Medical.htm

(Propriedades medicinais do cactus Lophophora)

http://www.newsweek.com/chemical-ayahuasca-has-potential-treat-diabetes-313780

(Pesquisa sobre a Ayahuasca e a diabetes)

Latest results

Interviews with pilot study participants

ALS patients and their initial evaluation of treatment using Ayahuasca medicinal plants

Q: Question

A: Answer

ResultsChart

Male, 65, UK, diagnosed with ALS

Q: What can you tell us in general about your medical condition, and to what degree has it affected you? (At the point prior to treatment using ayahuasca)

A: My prognosis as of March 2013 was that of a one-year life expectancy, I did get a specific MND diagnosis confirmed by a consultant neurologist, on the back of which an insurance company paid up on my critical illness cover, there being a clear understanding that I would probably not last the year. I was very weak and trembly, had lost over 20 pounds in muscle mass, my knees were prone to swelling and I was racked by cramps and muscle twitching. I could barely manage stairs, and couldn’t get out of the bath unassisted. I remember being a little challenged by a four inch step across the end of the room, choosing my best leg to step down.  

Q: Describe a typical experience with ayahuasca. What is it like during the immediate time the medicine is active in the body? What has been experienced afterwards?

A: As for side effects, initially a fair amount of retching, but I didn’t actually vomit much. Then some spastic activity, after which a warmth spread throughout my chest cavity, and sensations from the connection between muscle tissue and skeletal bone. It left me exhausted, but it “mellowed out” after a while into a contemplation state of mind where the concept of fear had a major part. Stressful emotions such as fear and anxiety seems to be a major vexation (in relation to neurological diseases), and the ayahuasca seemed to soothe that too. I didn’t feel that much different immediately afterwards, I suppose I felt a little more relaxed, but the following weeks (after sessions) my massage therapist said the muscle twitching was much improved, and I continued to recover steadily.

Q: Has this treatment relieved or improved your condition in any way so far?

A: I have made essentially a full recovery, slow but persistent, and the NHS consultants involved are mystified. Ayahuasca seems to me to have been instrumental in my recovery, which is fully documented. I am now fully healthy, I cycle to work. Now, after today doing a nine mile coastal walk for the pleasure it, I feel pretty much up to snuff, for a man of my age. A year after my diagnosis I held a party to express my gratitude to all the people who had helped me through, including T.H the consultant neurologist (he didn’t actually come). I was by that time much better, not up to full strength, but could party on and play the saxophone. I told my doctors about ayahuasca in August of 2013 I think, it was for a six monthly reassessment of my condition. T.H was frankly astonished, and when challenged said that the diagnosis was absolutely sound adding that the nerve conductivity tests were particularly unequivocal. It was then that I told him about the ayahuasca, and rather sheepishly, and mistakenly, he asked me if I had had a “good trip?” I replied that it had been unpleasant and that it was not a therapy for the faint hearted. Since then T.H has presented my case to some regional peer group, and a professor K.T. Their response was that perhaps I had a “mimic”, which seems to be exactly the same as the disease except for the outcome; or that the condition might have been brought upon me by the “cocktail of therapies I was taking” at the time. I have yet to make a measured response to this, but it was not until I had serious symptoms that were initially interpreted as Lyme’s disease or an atypical sero-negative rheumatoid arthritic condition, that I embarked on any kind of medical therapy at all. The history presents a persuasive argument. My family, friends and some of my patients are aware of my ayahuasca treatment and are generally supportive. My wife plays tennis with a number of retired GPs – their general opinion is that whatever I did can’t be too bad. Hell I’m still walking about and they were initially supporting my wife and family on the clear expectation of my imminent demise.

Q: Will you continue this treatment? If so, will you make any changes to your current regimen?

A: I don’t see any necessity to carry on being treated. I might do the ayahuasca again but that would really be just out of curiosity.

Q: Have you been following any particular diet prior to, or during your treatment?

A: Lots of organic fruit and vegetables, and I have a small holding so we have organic lamb and chicken too. I haven’t eaten dairy for the past two years, and I seldom drink alcohol though I had a glass of cider the other day.

Q: What made you try this alternative treatment?

A: It was an inspired patient who in doing an art degree in Plymouth came across the (ayahuasca) visionary art, and drew my attention to its source. Curiously some members of the church group with whom I sit proved an unexpected source of interest and leant me various books on the topic including those of the late Alexander T. Shulgin (american biochemist and pharmacologist).

Q: Would you like to add something, anything, that could be of interest to ALS patients, caregivers, researchers and readers of this website?

A: My underlying concern is that the pharmaceutical industry is solely concerned with the manufacture of specific molecules with a view to the making of money. I cannot see much hope of actual trials, because (a) the substances involved in Ayahuasca are well documented and not available for patenting (b) the number of actual cases is too small to warrant research (c ) the amount of money that could be made by investing in this area makes the whole issue unattractive to pharmaceutical companies. The basic difficulty is that the research into medicines is finance not need led, and the lumbering double blind trials are astonishingly expensive and I cannot imagine how it would be possible to set up a placebo/control group dose that could have similar effects but not alter your state of health. That being said, everything must have a beginning.

Q: Thank you for your time and for sharing.

2016 – Ayahuasca ALS Treatment

Female, 82, USA, diagnosed with ALS

Q: What can you tell us in general about the patient’s medical condition prior to ayahuasca treatment?

A: Mom wasn’t able to walk, talk, or eat using cutlery. She had to be fed through a syringe.

Q: How long did treatment continue?

A: 8 months between november 2015 until June 2016

Q: Did this treatment relieve or improve condition in any way?

A: It did improve her facial structure and expression, meaning that when opening her mouth to eat, which she had trouble doing, her jaws were allowed to stretch better. With this treatment, it corrected her mouth structure and jaw muscles. She became able to move one of her legs which was contracted before I increased the medication. It helped her to expand her right leg movement and to regain control over her feet, keeping them together. Treatment seemed to improve her memory, making her recognize and remember characters when she was watching TV. Her speech was impaired from ALS but she was able to use sign language to communicate with me.

Q: Did the patient follow any particular diet or medicinal protocol prior to, or during treatment?

A: Liquid food due to feeding problems, and Prevagen supplement. She recieved low doses of ayahuasca 10x extract, using between 6-10ml daily administrated orally by syringe.

(Note: Suggested dosage concentration and frequency varies greatly depending individual patient circumstances, please contact ayahuascatreatment@hotmail.com for
comprehensive information).

Q: What made you try this alternative treatment?

A: Reading online article and contact with the Ayahuasca ALS Treatment website.

Q: Would you like to add something, anything, that could be of interest to ALS patients, caregivers, researchers and readers of the website?

A: My advice to anyone, is to start the treatment at the earliest possible stage of ALS. Don’t wait any longer. Usee a small amount first to test reaction from it. If you want to increase it, be careful, this treatment is very strong and with a very “spicy” taste. You might need to add extra water to make it thinner and make it easier to swallow.

Q: Thank you for your time and for sharing.

2016 – Ayahuasca ALS Treatment

Male, 59, Sweden, diagnosed with ALS

Q: What can you tell us in general about your medical condition prior to ayahuasca treatment?

A: Balance problems, growing weakness in legs, then in fingers and face musculature. Twitches, speech difficulties, trouble swallowing. Could only walk using a rolleraid for short distances.

Q: How long did treatment continue?

A: June 2016 – October 2016. Disease has since progressed, but stalled temporarily during period of treatment.

Q: Did this treatment relieve or improve condition in any way?

A: Clear improvement of general condition. More strength and able to walk small distances again without rolleraid. Substantially improved speech. Aching pain gone from feet and knees. Trend continues over course of treatment with a clear sense of having more energy and better endurance for days following consumption. Feel very certain there is medicinal effect from the ayahuasca, and an impression something is going on in the body.

Q: Did you experience side effects? What were they like?

A: Light nausea, but without purging. Slight shivers. Sensitivity to light, taste and sound, although no psychoactivity. Fatigue on medicine days.

Q: Did you follow any particular diet or medicinal protocol prior to, or during treatment?

A: Non-dairy diet with little red meat. Fish or eggs sometimes. Birch sap, Berry Smoothies or fresh fruit, leafy greens, some nuts and ginger. No gluten or alcohol.

Q: What made you try this alternative treatment?

A: I am a biological researcher of chemical ecology, with great private interest in natural medicine and native people culture.

Q: Would you like to add something, anything, that could be of interest to ALS patients, caregivers, researchers and readers of the website?

A: I am convinced that we need to preserve the knowledge and philosohpy native people have gathered during thousands of years for the benefit of mankind.

Q: Thank you for your time and for sharing.

2017 – Ayahuasca ALS Treatment

Male, 25, Australia, diagnosed with ALS

Q: What can you tell us in general about your medical condition prior to ayahuasca treatment?

A: Prior to undertaking a microdosing regimen of ayahuasca (20-40mL a day), I was at a point where I used a walker to get around, had a very slight impediment with breathing and had lost force pretty much everywhere in my body. Other than this, I was and still am in bizarrely good shape and good health by all other measurements.

Q: For how long have treatment continued?

A: I engaged in a microdosing regimen in Feb 2017 – June 2017. I may resume again in some form soon.

Q: Did this treatment relieve or improve condition in any way?

A: There were moments when I had a sense of improvement – better coordination and fluidity of movement. Most notably, during this period of time, my mental attitude toward my predicament altered for the better, to which I give ayahuasca credit for aiding this process. To put it simply, I found myself stepping more so into a state of acceptance toward myself as a person and dropping some of the inner struggle that I dealt with though it was not ayahuasca alone that did this, and I do not claim any grand illumination, but it did help even if by inviting a state of introspection. This in turn has led not only in an improvement in life experience generally, but seemingly a slowing of (ALS) progression. There have been long periods where seemingly no degeneration was occurring. Though ultimately there has been some generalised progression during this time. I feel there has been benefits, but nothing substantial enough to make definite claims yet.

Q: Did you experience side effects? What were they like?

A: Occasionally a slight nausea, never dramatic. A generalised buzz or subtle sensation, particuarly through my head. I found myself engage in a rather introspective state, permitting myself to explore various psycho-emotional aspects of myself.

Q: Did you follow any particular diet or medicinal protocol prior to, or during treatment?

A: I had an array of orthomolecular medicines i made use of; Vit C, Grape seed extract, Glutathione, B Vitamins, St Marys Thistle, CoQ10, Worm wood among others, though i became less regimented with these over time and there seemed no consequence. I followed an organic diet, no gluten, sugar, alcohol. Plenty of protein, eggs, meats. I have tried in the past vegan, paleo and others.

Q: What was your motivation for trying this particular treatment among others available?

A: Ayahuasca was a kind of bucket list thing prior to any diagnosis. To learn it may be therapeutically useful was icing on the cake.
I have also had some incredible effects from (psilocybin) ‘magic mushrooms’: drastically reducing fasciculations and spasticity for a few days after a single dose. Seeing as mushrooms are very similar to ayahuasca, I saw it very reasonable to pursue ayahuasca, though ultimately, ayahuasca did not achieve the same things. I now am in the process of pursuing psilocybin mushrooms.

Q: Would you like to add something, anything, that could be of interest to ALS patients, caregivers, researchers and readers of the website?

A: What I find to be the most unmentioned aspect of chronic disease generally, or at least unendorsed conventionally, is the potential psycho-emotional factor. Reading Dr. Gabor Mate’s book ‘When The Body Says No’, I found to be particuarly poignant and clinically intriguing, in which he explores ALS specifically. My experience with ayahuasca, in reading testimony of other terminal survivors and with my personal experience of ALS over the last two and a half years has pointed me again and again in this direction: that ALS may be best looked at through a bio-psycho-social model and not merely as a disease of the neurons, that there may be a kind of psycho-emotional trauma involved. On this topic, ayahuasca and psilocybin assisted therapy have demonstrated some astounding results in dealing with depression, anxiety and PTSD. It is perhaps in this modality of ‘opening up the mind’ that they may offer hope for suffers of chronic illness, not just as a matter of pharmacological intervention.

Q: Thank you for your time and for sharing.

2018 – Ayahuasca ALS Treatment

Ayahuasca – Naturmedicin för potentiell behandling av ALS

Av Daniel Gustafsson

English version available

Denna artikel har tillkommit efter fleråriga studier av etnobotanik och neurologiska sjukdomar, i syftet att finna naturmedicinsk tillämpning inom neuromedicin och en verksam form av naturmedicinsk behandling för amyotrofisk lateralskleros och andra likartade motorneuronsjukdomar.

I syd- och centralamerika har ursprungsbefolkningen i Amazonas en lång historisk tradition av att tillreda och förtära en naturmedicin kallad ayahuasca. Den skördas och tillreds i form av ett sorts te, huvudsakligen av barken från en klätterväxt med namnet Banisteriopsis Caapi. Därutöver tillsätts ofta bark eller löv från träd med namnen Chacruna, Chaliponga eller Jurema, beroende på område. (Psychotria Viridis, Diplopterys Cabrerana, Mimosa Tenuiflora).

Caapi-växt, Amazonas

Jordens regnskogar är en enorm resurs och en förutsättning för upprätthållandet av planetens ekosystem. Det uppskattas att ett stort antal oupptäckta medicinskt värdefulla växtarter ryms i dessa skogar. Många konventionella läkemedel har sitt ursprung i substanser utvunna ur regnskogsväxter eller ur därav syntetiserade varianter. Etnofarmakologer har länge känt till att det finns ett utbrett stöd för ayahuascaväxters medicinska värde, men tillgängliga studier som styrker detta har tidigare varit begränsade.

Detta har dock kommit att ändras under 2000-talet. Man har funnit att naturliga ämnen extraherade från ayahuascaväxter har unika restorativa och starkt antioxidativa egenskaper på specifika nervceller i hjärnan och övriga centrala nervsystemet rörande nervsignalöverföring, muskelkontroll och minne. Det ger på delvis sannolika skäl upphov till teorin att ayahusca kan utgöra en effektiv behandling av neurodegenerativa sjukdomar som ALS, Alzheimer’s och Parkinsons’s sjukdom. Lovande resultat har också påträffats vid studier av ämnet psilocybin, starkt närbesläktat med ämnen funna i ayahuasca, naturligt förekommande i särskilda arter av naturmedicinska svampar använda av ursprungsbefolkningen i samma områden där ayahuasca används.

Enligt Dr. Juan Ramos, överläkare vid avdelningen för neurologiska sjukdomar vid South Florida university, USA, visar inledande studier att dessa ämnen stimulerar bildandet av nya celler i centrala nervsystemet, bland annat i de områden som styr ovan nämnda funktioner. Om detta kan komma att utgöra ett eventuellt botemedel genom fullt återställande av skadade eller förlorade celler återstår att se, men inledande resultat talar för att så kan vara fallet. Ytterligare studier ledda av Dr. Jordi Riba vid Sant Pau-universitetet, Barcelona, tyder på paralleller mellan ayahuasca och förnyad nervbaneutveckling i neocortex. Även cancerforskare intresserar sig för ayahuasca som behandlingsform, då alkaloider från dessa växter har visat sig effektiva mot bildningen av cancerceller, och tros kunna stabilisera och balansera funktionen i mitokondrierna, som försörjer kroppens och nervsystemets celler med energi.

Detta relaterar till ALS-forskning då abnorm mitokondriefunktion anses vara en av de huvudsakliga orsakerna till nervcellskador vid ALS, och att normaliseringen av metabolismen i mitokondrier från alkaloider i ayahuasca, genom modulering av signalsubstanser kan förebygga nervcellskador och öka överlevnadsgraden för återstående nervceller. Fungerande mitokondrier är direkt kopplade till nervcellernas överlevnad, och man tror att oreglerade intracellulära signalsubstansnivåer är en utlösande orsak till dysfunktionella mitokondrier, eller att de förstärker andra mekanismer med benägenhet att skada nervceller.

Eduardo E. Schenberg, Federal University of Sao Paulo:

“Det finns tillgängliga och tillräckliga bevis för att de aktiva ämnena i ayahuasca, speciellt dimetyltryptamin och harmin, har den positiva effekten att motverka cancerceller i cellkulturer som används i cancerforskning, och att dessa ämnen inverkar på biokemiska processer som är viktiga för behandlingen av cancer, både in vitro och in vivo. De få men seriösa rapporter som finns tillgängliga om människor med erfarenhet av ayhuasca som cancerbehandling, bör tas på allvar. Hypotesen är att kombinationen av (beta-Carboline) alkaloider och dimetyltryptamin närvarande i ayahuasca minskar blodtillförseln till tumörer, minskar celldelningen och aktiverar apoptos (programmerad celldöd) hos cancerceller, samt förändrar den obalanserade metabolism i cancerceller som orsakar mutationer”.

En nyligen utförd studie vid Icahn School of Medicine i USA, påvisar sambandet mellan harmin i ayahuasca och återbildandet av insulin-producerande betaceller. Endast detta ämne bland de 100.000 som ingick i studien uppvisade denna specifika cellgenerativa förmåga, vilket tillsammans med övrig information indikerar att även processer där andra celler i behov av återskapande, såsom nervceller hos ALS-patienter, går att påverka. Det finns även ett ökande intresse att utforska dessa växters cellregenerativa egenskaper, inom forskning kring ryggmärgsskador. Harmin som förekommer i ayahuasca har även visat sig kunna reglera den synaptiska signalöverföringsprocessen i vilken glutamat omsätts, och i vilken grad exponering sker i nervsystemet, och därigenom reducera excitotoxiska reaktioner – en av orsakerna som tros utlösa ALS och med tiden förvärra dess symptom genom konstant överaktivering av receptorer i nervsystemet.

Det som tidigare i viss mån varit kontroversiellt beträffande ayahuasca, är att växterna i fråga ansågs vara hallucinogener. Man avfärdade med andra ord dessa medicinskt betydelsefulla växter som om de vore naturliga droger. En mer korrekt benämning, med respekt för ursprungskulturen i vilken ayahuasca ingår, är “enteogener” – vilket betyder växter som används i traditionella sammanhang, framkallandes upplevelser av en andlig natur (utifrån urinvånarnas eget perspektiv och förklaringsmodell). I flera länder, bl.a Peru, är ayahuasca ett fullt accepterat komplement till konventionell medicin, och många västländer har i allt högre utsträckning reviderat sin tidigare grundlösa och felaktiga attityd gentemot enteogena växter såsom ayahuasca, då fler och fler studier med positiva resultat framkommit kring dessa.

Harmalin och andra liknande harmala-alkaloider som återfinns i B. Caapi, utgör en form av så kallade monoaminoxidashämmare. Monoaminoxidas (MAO) är ett enzym i kroppen som bryter ner signalsubstanser (t.ex serotonin). Hämningen av MAO gör att signalsubstansen kan stanna kvar i synapsen under längre tid än vanligt. Vissa antidepressiva läkemedel verkar på ett liknande sätt, då de stimulerar utvalda receptorer i ett område. Alkaloiderna från ayahuasca ska dock inte jämställas med antidepressiva läkemedel, då de har helt olika egenskaper även om de båda har förmågan att verka på samma sorts receptorer. En jämförelse är att de båda har samma sorts leveranssystem, men olika innehåll. De biokemiska egenskaperna i de ämnen som extraheras ur ayahuasca, och dess effekter i kroppen är unika för dessa växter enkomt. Olika typer av harmala-alkaloider dämpar neurotoxiska metaboliter som kynurenin och pyridin-dikarboxylsyra – metaboliter med bekräftad korrelation till ALS, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s och Huntington’s sjukdom, alla inom vilka förhöjda nivåer av angivna metaboliter återfunnits och som tros bidra till sjukdomarnas uppkomst genom interaktioner med motorneuroner i nervsystemet.

harmaline_3d_mid

Harmalin, som tillsammans med harmin och tetrahydroharmin (samtliga olika former av mao-hämmare) utgör huvudkomponenter i medicinalväxten Banisteriopsis Caapi

molecules

Jämförelse mellan Dimetyltryptamin respektive Psilocin- och Serotonin-molekyl (Psilocybin omvandlas till Psilocin i kroppen)

Ayahuasca är i sig ej giftigt eller skadligt för kroppen, men tillfälliga bieffekter som illamående och yrsel är vanliga vid förtäring av en stor eller koncentrerad mängd. Att kombinera vissa läkemedel med MAO-hämmare som ayahuasca innehåller en reversibel form av, kan dock innebära hälsofara under vissa omständigheter. Detta innebär att en förutsättning för att kunna inta ayahuasca ur säkerhetsmässig synpunkt, är att medicinen inte kombineras med några kontraindikativa läkemedel. Personer med epilepsi eller högt blodtryck bör heller inte använda ayahuasca, eller göra så endast med extra försiktighet och under uppsyn. Obehagliga bieffekter från medicinen är i stor utsträckning dosberoende, och intag av en mindre mängd för strikt medicinskt ändamål kan således enkelt innebära få eller inga biverkningar.

Vid sökande av information om ayahuasca, kan man påträffa ett fåtal negativt vinklade artiklar, som berättar om otursamma turister som på eget bevåg, eller som blivit lurade, dricker något helt annat än ayahuasca – såsom den giftiga växten datura, eller koncentrat från tobaksplantor med höga halter av nikotin – med allvarliga hälsokonsekvenser som följd. Detta leder till spridande av missvisande information, och är tragiskt inte bara för de drabbade och deras anhöriga, utan också för de naturmedicinska samfund som verkar för främjandet av säker användning av etnobotanisk medicin under seriösa former. Sensationalistiska rubriker och vinklade artiklar med obekräftade påståenden, skrivna av personer som saknar kunskap om etnobotanisk medicin, hjälper varken ALS-patienter eller andra med behov av naturmedelbaserade behandlingsformer. I flera länder, inklusive Peru, Brasilien och Costa Rica, finns ett flertal etablerade mottagningar som erbjuder ayahuascabehandling där korrekta växter odlas ekologiskt på området eller skördas i vilt tillstånd, och därefter bereds av erfarna botaniker.

B. Caapi frö och blommor

En av de tidigaste studierna av B. Caapi gjordes på 1920-talet, där patienter med Parkinson’s sjukdom upplevde god symptomlindring efter intag av växtextrakt. Man valde dock att inte vidareutveckla någon medicin med denna växt som utgångspunkt, och fokuserade istället på syntetiskt framställda ämnen avsedda för läkemedelsproduktion, då befintligt innehåll från naturliga växter inte utgjorde föremål för patent och därmed ekonomisk vinst. Ayahuasca ur medicinsk synpunkt kommer troligen uppmärksammas allt mer under kommande år, men är redan väletablerad på flera platser. Skulle de upptäckter som gjorts kring de växter som utgör ayahuasca på sikt leda till ett framtaget läkemedel, så ligger det dessvärre många år framåt i tiden, då processen för framtagna läkemedel gällande finansiering, tester och regelverk av uppenbara anledningar är tidskrävande. Det intressanta är att ayahuasca i sin naturliga form redan idag tillgängligt för de med diagnos där övriga behandlingsmöjligheter saknas. För de som kan och vill medicinen finns, om än inga garantier, trots allt en möjlighet till symptomförbättring, bromsverkan och eventuell långsiktig förbättring. Som alltid varierar individuella resultat, och man bör tydliggöra att forskningen kring detta ännu befinner sig på ett tidigt stadium. Det är även viktigt att framhäva och därmed minimera de risker som finns gällande kontraindikativa mediciner och hälsotillstånd. Under tiden bör denna information dock vara värd att uppmärksamma för den som lever med progressiv motorneuronsjukdom.

Min personliga koppling till detta ämne och artikel är bortgången av en nära väns mor på grund av ALS år 2012. Sjukdomsförloppet skedde snabbt i hennes fall, och tyvärr var flera av de nu tillgängliga studierna omnämnda i artikeln vid tillfället ännu ej publicerade. Detta ledde mig till att vidareutforska kopplingen mellan enteogena naturmediciner och möjligheten till behandling av neurodegenerativa sjukdomar, och till att informera om den generella kunskapen kring dessa medicinalväxter.

B. Caapi är fullt laglig i de flesta länder, på samma vis som andra och mer kända växtbaserade naturmediciner, såsom exempelvis Echinacea och Ginseng. Precis som med andra naturläkemedel, är det upp till användaren att nyttja och kombinera dessa på ett sätt som inte innebär några hälsorisker eller interaktioner. Naturmediciner bör alltid behandlas med respekt, på samma sätt som med konventionella läkemedel, receptbelagda såväl som receptfria. En vanligt förekommande art inom växtriket som faktiskt innehåller små mängder harmala-alkaloider är passionsblomma, även känd som passionsfruktträd. Koncentrationerna av dessa ämnen i torkade passionslöv och blommor är dock alldeles för låga (och frukten innehåller inte någon alls) för att kunna användas effektivt för monoaminoxidashämning och ayahuasca-likartade ändamål. Alkaloidprofilen sett till proportioner och molekylär strukturavvikelse mellan distinkta alkaloider, matchar heller inte helt B. Caapi, vilket gör de respektive släktena långt ifrån likvärdiga i medicinskt avseende. Extrakt från varierande arter av Passiflora utvinns och säljs emellertid på naturläkemedelsmarknaden som milda avslappnings- och sömnmedel.

Ämnet vid namn dimetyltryptamin som återfinns i de växter som traditionellt tillsätts ayahuasca utöver B. Caapi, är dock lagmässigt reglerat i vissa länder, klassificerad som en otillåten substans. (På tveksamma grunder enligt nedanstående redogörelse). Detta specifika ämne från några av dessa växter ger upphov till ett tillfälligt förändrat medvetandetillstånd, ett ofta missförstått och stigmatiserat fenomen. En beskrivning av detta tillstånd är att det är drömlikt, att det stimulerar minnesförmågan och förmågan till abstrakt tänkande, och att det har självterapeutiska egenskaper. Trots att dimetyltryptamin är naturligt förekommande i människokroppen, och antas produceras i små mängder av tallkottkörteln i hjärnan under sömnstadier då kroppen genomgår en reparativ fas, har ämnet förblivit illegal substans i ett antal länder sedan 1960- och 70-talet, då beslutsfattare under dåtidens rådande moralpanik förhastat och godtyckligt kriminaliserade många ämnen, även naturliga, som antogs kunna påverka medvetandet. Detta trots det faktum att många av dem, inklusive dimetyltryptamin, aldrig påvisats utgöra egentlig hälsofara, och dessutom använts traditionellt av naturfolk för att behandla sjukdomar och hälsoproblem under århundraden. Saven från Chacrunablad har traditionellt använts mot migrän och insektsbett, och Juremabark för att behandla brännskador och påskynda sårläkningsprocessen. Dimetyltryptamin riktar sig även och verkar på chaperone sigma 1, en receptorsubtyp med förekomst i både nerv- och gliaceller i centrala nervsystemet med kapacitet att modulera biologiska mekanismer associerade med neurodegeneration. Sigma 1-receptorer utgör övertygande måltavlor för att farmakologiskt behandla neurodegenerativa tillstånd, och dimetyltryptamin agerar som en endogen regulator för sigma 1-receptorn, men interaktionen mellan dem sett till motorneuronsjukdomsprocessen är ej klarlagd.

Många europeiska länder har valt att omdefiniera sina riktlinjer beträffande många medicinska växter, kring vilka man tidigare saknade kunskap, tack vare ökad insikt i deras användningsområden och tillgång till ny information och forskning. Detta gäller såväl dimetyltryptamin, såsom kaktus innehållande meskalin, och hur man lagmässigt förhåller sig till dessa beträffande de enskilda separerade ämnena – kontra det kompletta (och tillåtna) växtmaterialet. I Sverige friades en man från Kiruna, tillhörande den samiska ursprungsbefolkningen, år 2013 från åtal för att ha infört peruansk medicinsk kaktus i landet. Rätten fastställde att växtmaterialet i sin naturliga form inte kan anses utgöra en klassificerad substans (sedan 1960-talet har ämnet meskalin varit lagmässigt reglerat, trots avsaknad av studier som styrker klassificeringen, och trots lång traditionell användning av naturfolk i hälsofrämjande syfte), och att terapiverksamheten som mannen bedrivit, som omfattar intag av Echinopsis Pachanoi-kaktus, inte är brottslig utan tjänat syftet att hjälpa människor med hälsoproblem. Ett annat prejudicerande fall i högsta domstolen med samma utgång, gällde ayahuascaväxter innehållandes dimetyltryptamin. Kaktusar från Echinopsis och Lophophora-släktet är traditionellt kända för återställande och rensande kroppslig verkan, och används bland annat för detta syfte inom traditionell etnobotanisk medicin.

För att tydliggöra det hela så är definitionen av ayahuasca i princip ett te, gjort på antingen endast växten Banisteriopsis Caapi , eller denna samt ytterligare växter innehållandes dimetyltryptamin. Ett te gjort på endast B. Caapi saknar det som ibland kallas “visionära” egenskaper, då det endast är tillsatsen av växter innehållandes dimetyltryptamin som i kombination med mao-hämmande alkaloider från B. Caapi inducerar ett medvetandetillstånd som tidigare missbenämnts som “hallucinogent”. Det bör förtydligas att denna term ger upphov till negativa associationer hos många, och är således föremål för obefogad rädsla och missuppfattningar. Till skillnad från uppfattningen många tycks ha, hallucinerar man inte saker och ting ut ur tomma intet, efter att ha druckit ayahuasca. Istället handlar det om sekvenser av inre drömlika visioner, som uppstår medan man vilar, i ett vaket och medvetet tillstånd, förutsatt att en viss mängd te har intagits. Det är i själva verket relativt odramatiskt, utöver att vissa människor som ännu inte hunnit vänja sig vid medicinen genom gradvis användning ibland drabbas av upprörd mage, illamående och uppkastningar, något som kan relativt enkelt kan undvikas.

Detta är ofta föremål för missförstånd: Ingen stor mängd ayahuasca krävs för att erfara endast dess medicinska effekt – utan visuella fenomen, illamående eller andra oönskade biverkningar. Flera av de hälsoeffekter som eftersträvas kan även uppnås genom användandet av endast B. Caapi – utan övriga växter, vilket gör det möjligt att ytterligare undgå biverkningar. Det bör dock påpekas att synergieffekten mellan de båda växterna vid samtidig användning ger den bästa medicinska och kroppsliga responsen. Överdrifter och okunskap beträffande ayahuasca gjorde dessa växter förbisedda inledningsvis, men då folk med erfarenhet av ayahuasca i medicinsk kontext framträdit och påtalat dessa växters värde och relevans i förhållande till olika hälsotillstånd, bland andra neurologiska, så har det forskningsmässiga och medicinska intresset för ayahuasca återupprättats. Ayahuasca har använts för symptomlindring av Multipel Skleros och reumatism, av ett stort antal människor i Europa sedan tidigt 2000-tal. ALS, multipel skleros, Alzheimer’s och Parkinsons’s sjukdom har alla den gemensamma grunden att de involverar degeneration av nervceller i någon form. Det är därför troligt att en bredspektrum-medicin med förmåga att påverka den nervcellbildande processen, och som också har påtaglig antioxidativ verkan, kan förebygga och nedsakta progressen av neurologiska sjukdomar i allmänhet.

I det fallet dramatiska eller udda berättelser om ayahuasca påträffas, härstammar de till stor del från resenärer som under sent 80- respektive tidigt 90-tal levde med stamfolk i sydamerika och deltog i traditionell rituell användning av ayahusca – intagandes exceptionellt tilltagna eller koncentrerade mängder av medicinen, med djuprensande och svåruthärdade upplevelser som följd. Denna medicin bör som alla andra respekteras och nyttjas förnuftigt, men bör heller inte vara föremål för överdrifter eller missvisande fakta som leder till att människor med ett medicinskt behov går miste om information och kunskap som i andra fall hade kunnat spela en avgörande roll för deras liv och hälsa. De fascinerande inre bildintryck som nämnts tidigare, som ayahuasca kan ge upphov till, verkar ofta ha ett naturorienterat tema – kanske kopplat rent psykologiskt till de förväntningar och associationer som föreligger. Vackra återgivningar i form av målningar av den peruanske konstnären Pablo Amaringo (1938-2009) ger en viss utseendemässig uppfattning kring detta. Visionerna uppstår av den enkla anledningen att kombinationen av alkaloider och tryptaminer i ayahusca tillsammans påverkar receptorer, som i sin tur stimulerar processen som gör att man relaterar till bilder och ord – vilket är av intresse och värde för forskning kring Alzheimer’s och andra demenssjukdomar.

Ayahuasca är bevisligen icke-beroendeframkallande, och används bland annat för att avvänja människor från drogberoenden, då ayahuasca har en dokumenterat abstinensbefriande effekt.

MAO-hämningen möjliggör att upptaget av dimetyltryptamin kan ske i kroppen, då det i vanliga fall och vid utebliven mao-hämning, bryts ned av enzymer i magen med utebliven effekt som följd. Dimetyltryptamin är molekylärt närmast identiskt med ovan nämnda psilocybin i Dr. Ramos forskning. Teoretiskt arbetar den unika kombinationen av olika harmala-alkaloider från B. Caapi och dimetyltryptamin från ytterligare växter, på cellnivå för att reparera och nybilda nervceller, stimulera och förstärka överföringen av nervsignaler och skydda befintliga celler från skada. Detta är utan tvekan värdefullt från ett neuromedicinskt perspektiv.

 

Ayahuasca såsom förpackad och såld i hälsokostbutiker i Peru. Notera den bifogade etiketten med spårbar källa och datummärkning. Olika varianter av denna torkade växt finns tillgängliga, var och en med åtskilda men liknande proportioner mellan de innehållande alkaloiderna.

I Europa är Spanien ett av de länder där ayahuasca etablerats som en behandlingsform, och i samma land anordnas även en internationell konferens under hösten 2014, där etnofarmakologer, psykologer och forskare från hela världen samlas kring temat ayahuasca och andra kända enteogener. Bland andra föreläser Ede Frecska, M.D., Ph.D, University of Debrecen, om möjligheterna att återskapa hjärnceller och reglera immunförsvaret genom växtbaserad medicin. Detta event anordnas av ICEERS – International Center for Ethnobotanical Education Research and Service, och kan följas på:

http://www.aya2014.com/en/confirmed-speakers-2/

caapi_examine

Undersökning av B. Caapi, Ayahuasca World Conference

Utöver sin förmåga att understödja och förstärka reparativ process av nervceller och förmågan att skydda celler från oxidativ påverkan, besitter många av dessa enteogena växter (och svampar) även psykoterapeutiska egenskaper. En tillvaro med degenerativ sjukdom innebär svår stress för patienter, och en påtaglig känslomässig lättnad, personlig insikt samt förbättrad förmåga att hantera situationen på sikt, kan uppnås genom att erfara enteogena medicinalväxter i en trygg och stöttande miljö, enligt välkända Johns Hopkin’s medical university.

Att dessa medicinska växter får upprättelse och vetenskapligt stöd är goda nyheter på flera sätt. Hållbar utveckling och miljöpåverkan är frågor som uppstår, och hittills är utsikten förhållandevis positiv. Många ekologiska plantager har uppstått i syd- och centralamerika, där ayahuasca odlas både för lokal användning och för export, vilket ger arbete och inkomst till människor från fattiga områden. Detta innebär också möjligheten för lokalbefolkningen att återanknyta till sin kulturella bakgrund, då ayahuasca är kulturarvs-förklarat i Peru och på andra platser.

 

Hållbar ayahuasca-odling, Brasilien. Dessa småväxta Chacruna-träd blir 2-3 meter höga.

DMckennaDr. Dennis Mckenna, en av världens mest erfarna forskare inom etnofarmakologi talar om vikten av hållbarhet beträffande bevarandet av ayahuasca och regnskogen med alla dess medicinalväxter. Detta berör alla människor som erfarit betydelsefull hälsofrämjande verkan från ayahuascaväxter. Dr. Mckenna leder avdelningen för etnofarmakologi vid Heffter Research Institute, New Mexico, USA. Han är även verksam inom Academic Health Center vid University of Minnesota, och hade en ledande roll i organiseringen av Hoasca Project, en internationell biomedicinsk studie av ayahuasca, finansierad av Stanley Medical Research Institute.

Potentialen för denna naturmedicin, och kunskapen kring dess medicinska tillämpningsområden har börjat kartläggas på allvar, vilket är positivt. Det är viktigt att man ej framhäver detta som något slags mirakelmedel, men rätt använt kan det på lång sikt fungera återställande på den kroppsliga och mentala funktionen i människor med vissa neurologiska sjukdomar. Man bör på ett ärligt och vettig sätt informera människor om alla tillgängliga naturmedelbaserade behandlingsformer. Då det naturliga obehandlade växtmaterialet från vilket ayahuasca tillreds, befunnits ej omfatta kategorin otillåtna ämnen, föreligger således inga lagmässiga hinder för svensk import av naturmedicinsk ayahuasca för de med behov att nyttja medicinen. Man bör dock iaktta varsamhet med dosering för att säkerställa en lagom grad av verkan, och en viss pålästhet är nödvändig för att kunna tillreda själva medicinalväxterna så att de samverkar korrekt. Utöver detta är en lämplig diet essentiell i samband med ayahuasca, för att minimera biverkningar och för att maximera upptag och omsättning av medicinskt verksamma ämnen. Den hjälp och information som krävs för dessa ändamål tillhandahålls deltagare i nedanstående pilotstudie.

En internationell pilotstudie pågår där patienter med ALS-diagnos från flertalet länder, inklusive Sverige, använder och dokumenterar effekterna av ayahuasca som naturmedicinsk behandlingsform. Resultaten sammanställs inför en kommande utvärdering, med syftet att presentera användbara resultat för institutioner inom neurologisk forskning.

För att följa detta projekt, eller vid intresse att själv medverka i studien, klicka på följande länk: https://ayahuascatreatment.wordpress.com/2015/05/19/pilotprojekt-for-naturmedicinsk-als-behandling/

Ayahuasca har historiskt använts under lång tid, men endast relativt nyligen för behandling av neurodegenerativa sjukdomar. Eventuell påtaglig förbättring och varaktigt återställd förmåga i samband med naturmedicinering antas om sådan möjlig att uppnå först på sikt. Inledande dokumentation från deltagare i studien anger gemensamma nämnare i form av ökad rörelseförmåga, reducerad spasticitet och förbättrad styrka och gång i berörda delar av kroppen. Det bör dock påpekas att ingen av dessa deltagare helt tappat muskelkontrollen i berörda kroppsdelar före påbörjad behandling, och att det i nuläget ej är känt om dessa effekter förblir permanenta.

Summering:

Ayahusca kan komma att användas inom behandling för ALS och andra motorneuronsjukdomar baserat på det faktum att studier antyder unika antioxidativa effekter som verkar skydda celler i det centrala nervsystemet genom målsökning av celler via ett särskilt biokemiskt transportsystem, och att de ämnen som ayahuasca innehåller stimulerar nybildning och utveckling av hjärnceller samt uppreglererar kommunikativa förbindelser i nervsystemet. I studier har även betydande symptomförbättring hos patienter med Parkinson’s sjukdom kunnat konstateras – samtliga neurodegenerativa sjukdomar har gemensam grund, och mediciner verksamma inom en viss kategori neurologiska sjukdomar har ofta verksamhet och användbarhet även inom närliggande områden. Även baserat på bekräftelser från människor som använt ayahuasca för symptomlindring av multipel skleros och reumatism (notera åter gemensam grund för neurodegenerativa sjukdomar) dokumenterade i böcker om ämnet, och från (på ännu tidigt stadium) varierande grader av symptomförbättring från deltagare i pilotstudien som redan använt sig av medicinen under en tid. Studier påvisar även förmåga att reglera nivåer för att återställa normal metabolism i mitokondrier, och att minska excitotoxicitet i nervsystemet.

Ayahuasca och andra enteogener har redan i hög grad uppnått kredibilitet och upprättelse, även om kunskapsmässiga bitar kvarstår. Tills vidare förblir dessa medicinalväxter tillgängliga att utvärdera av de som väljer att utforska alternativet. Angående de neurodegenerativa sjukdomar som artikeln tagit upp, kan dessa växter ha en framtida roll som verktyg för att vända sjukdomsförloppet i ALS och relaterade neurosjukdomar.

Referenser och studier:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828149/pdf/nihms156585.pdf

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828149/

(Ayahuasca and neurological disease)

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4773875/

(Neurotherapeutic ayahuasca potential in pharmacology)

https://academic.oup.com/ijnp/article/20/9/698/3835428

(Neurotransmission increase and ayahuasca induced reduction of neurotoxic metabolites study)

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0019264

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110526131244.htm

(Ayahuasca harmala-alkaloids and Alzheimer’s disease study)

http://www.sram.org/media/documents/uploads/article_pdfs/5-3-01-Serrano-Duenas.pdf

(B. Caapi and Parkinson’s disease)

http://beckleyfoundation.org/2016/06/16/ayahuasca-stimulates-the-birth-of-new-brain-cells-latest-findings-from-the-beckleysant-pau-research-programme/

(Ayahuasca neurogenesis study)

http://www.stichtingopen.nl/en/component/content/article/research/study-shows-no-evidence-of-adverse-mental-health-effects-in-long-term-ayahuasca-users

(Study proving ayahuasca safe from a health point of view, and to not have any longterm side effects)

http://smo.sagepub.com/content/1/2050312113508389.full

(Ayahuasca cancer research)

http://health.usf.edu/medicine/neurology/faculty/sanchez_ramos.htm

(Dr. Juan Ramos profile)

(Psilocybin brain research)

http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0042421

(Study proving regular intake of ayahuasca leading to increased longterm wellbeing and general mental health)

http://iceers.org

(ICEERS – International center for ethnobotanical education research and service)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23627784
http://bitnest.ca/external.php?id=%257DbxUgY%255CC%2540%251BD%252A%253A-D%251BU%255BP%2500JIqc%2560%2515T
(Canadian studies of ayahuasca as treatment for drug/alcohol abuse)

http://www.heffter.org/research-jhus.htm

(Johns Hopkin’s university studies on the the therapeutical benefits of psilocybin medicinal mushrooms)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6682439

(Echinopsis and Lophophora cactus central nervous system study)

http://www.newsweek.com/chemical-ayahuasca-has-potential-treat-diabetes-313780

(Ayahuasca diabetes research)

https://vimeo.com/39251248

Dr. Gabor Maté on Ayahuasca and stress related disease

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aufjjU0EYxk

(Ayahuasca and neural pathway redevelopment in the neocortex)

http://www.iceers.org/docs/science/ayahuasca/ICEERS2012_Ayahuasca_literature_compilation.pdf

(Compilation of scientific literature on ayahuasca)

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3220934/

(Harmine and glutamate transporter expression study)

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1347861314000267

(Role of sigma-1 receptors in neurodegenerative diseases)

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/24004971_The_Hallucinogen_NN-Dimethyltryptamine_DMT_Is_an_Endogenous_Sigma-1_Receptor_Regulator

(Publication on dimethyltryptamine and Sigma-1 receptor regulation)

http://www.movementdisorders.org/MDS/Journals/Clinical-Practice-E-Journal-Overview/Movement-Disorders-Clinical-Practice-Vol-3-Issue-1/

(B. Caapi Postencephalitic Parkinsonism therapy)

Ayahuasca, environment and the future

Dennis Mckenna, PH.D, one of the world’s most renowned ethnopharmacology researchers speaks on the importance of sustainability, regarding cultivation of ayahuasca and the preservation of rainforests. This should concern all of you out there, who benefit from treatment using ayahuasca medicinal plants.

Dr. Dennis Mckenna Bio

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Dr. Dennis Mckenna pruning Ayahuasca plants in a greenhouse at the Minnesota University

Ayahuasca ALS Treatment Pilot Study

Ayahuasca ALS treatment trial in progress – Current number of participants: 34 (Sweden, United States, Belgium, Finland, UK, Turkey, Brazil, Italy, Canada, Russia, Singapore, Colombia, Argentina, India, Croatia, Australia)

Last Updated: September 2018

Based on response to the original article, a pilot study has been initiated in order to create incentive for neuromedicinal research into ayahuasca and its potential for ALS treatment.

Many concerned people have made contact, inquiring further studies on the subject to be conducted. General absence of awareness on the medicinal value of these plants and their possible role in future ALS treatment calls for action to promote research and awareness, a process in which you may affect development and outcome.

Are you considering using ayahuasca in attempt to treat any of these conditions?

  • ALS or other type of motor neuron disease
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Parkinson’s
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Other neurological condition

 

Please consider providing your background and personal experience to this website, study and project for documentation purposes. Your contribution may help to advance research in natural neuromedicine, and making vital information known to the public. Results will be presented to neuromedicinal and ethnobotanical researchers worldwide.

Featured image

There are currently 34 participants diagnosed with ALS, from sixteen different countries, in this study, evaluating ayahuasca treatment, eventual results to be published on this website and sent to neuromedicinal research groups. Long-term documentation continues in participants who respond positive to treatment.

Visit the latest results page for interviews:

https://ayahuascatreatment.wordpress.com/2015/03/31/latest-results-2/

This is a non-profit and independent project where participants volunteer in the opportunity to advance natural neuromedicinal treatment research, while recieving advice and updates based on previous and current participant experience.

Correspondense through e-mail initiates discussion on details and questions regarding study. Preferably, write “ALS study” in the topic field to ensure proper sorting, as an increasing number of e-mails requires answering on a regular basis. Please provide information about yourself, your diagnosis and current health condition (see below chart) to make personal assessment possible.

 

Contact:
ayahuascatreatment@hotmail.com

Include:

  • Name, age, gender and country
  • Date of diagnosis
  • Symptom history and development
  • Communication – is speech affected?
  • Is breathing or swallowing ability affected?
  • Mobility – Able to walk or in need of assistance?
  • Pharmaceutical medications – Any drugs currently being used? Can they be excluded or reduced without health concerns?
  • Diet (Documentation needed listing all food and drink items during 1-2 average days to determine neccessary therapy adjustments)

Note that this pilot study is a non-clinical trial, based on networking between adult individuals, each responsible for their own health. The author of this website and content will not be responsible for personal health consequences of individuals included in study.

To all people and participants involved in the Ayahuaca ALS Treatment project, providing documentation for this study: Thank you for doing the ALS community a great service by supporting research, exploring treatment options and sharing your experience. More information and updates will follow.

 

To support this study, please use paypal. Any donation no matter amount helps to keep this project alive, and to keep research in progress.

Paypal recipient: ayahuascatreatment@hotmail.com

paypaldo.png

 

Ayahuasca – Ethnobotanical medicine for potential treatment of ALS

By Daniel Gustafsson

Swedish version/Artikel på svenska: sweflag

This article is the culmination of six years work, having studied ethnobotanical natural medicine and the field of motor neuron disease, making connections between the two in the search for viable treatment option for ALS – amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and similar neurodegenerative conditions.

In south and central america, native people of many tribes living within the Amazon rainforest have a long historical tradition of preparing and consuming a natural medicinal tea called ayahuasca. It is harvested and made mainly from a wild growing vine, its latin name being Banisteriopsis Caapi. Often, but not always, leaves from trees named Chacruna or Chaliponga (Psychotria Viridis and Diplopterys Cabrerana) are added to the tea, or in some regions Jurema tree bark (of the Leguminosae family and Mimosa species).

 

Caapi vine growing in the Amazon  jungle.

The rainforests of the earth are known to be enormously resourceful and a necessity in upholding the ecosystem of the planet. An estimated abundance of undiscovered medicinally valuable plants remain to be explored within these forests. Many conventional pharmaceuticals originate from substances found in rainforest plants, or from their synthesized variants. Ethnopharmacologists are long since aware of vast support for the medicinal value of ayahuasca and its use in treatment of a wide variety of diseases, but until recently evidence has been limited. This however has changed in the 21st century, as interest and studies in ayahuasca have increased.

Natural substances extracted from ayahuasca plants have been found to possess unique restorative and strongly antioxidative properties on specific nerve cells in the brain and central nervous system, controlling neurotransmission, muscle and motor activity, memory and coordination. This gives probable cause to the theory that ayahuasca could be an effective treatment for neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s disease. Promising results as of date have also been obtained from studying the substance psilocybin, remarkebly closely related from a molecular view to the substances found in ayahuasca, naturally occuring in certain species of medicinal mushrooms consumed by the indigenous people where ayahuasca is also used.

According to Dr. Juan Ramos, head of the neurological disease department at the South Florida university, USA, initial studies show that mushroom tryptamine substances semi-identical to the ones contained in ayahuasca stimulate the development of new cells in the areas of the brain controlling the above mentioned functions. If this could prove to become an eventual cure through complete restoration of damaged and already lost nerve cells remains to be seen, but initial results indicate this could potentially be the case. Other studies led by Dr. Jordi Riba at the spanish university of Sant Pau, Barcelona, show connections between ayahuasca and neural pathway redevelopment in the neocortex. Cancer researchers have also shown interest in B. Caapi, as its alkaloids have shown to be effective against the growth of cancer cells, and are believed to be able to stabilize and balance mitochondrial function. This relates also to ALS research in that mitochondrial dysfunction is nominated one of the main causes of cell damage in ALS, and that the normalization of mitochondrial metabolism through modulation of calcium influx from beneficial alkaloids contained in ayahuasca could prevent motor neuron damage and increase nerve cell survival rate. Mitochondrial function is directly related to neuronal survival, and unregulated levels of intracellular calcium are thought to initiate motor neuron dysfunction, or amplify other mechanisms prone to injure motor neurons.

Eduardo E. Schenberg, Federal University of Sao Paulo:

“There are enough available evidence that the active substances in ayahuasca, especially dimethyltryptamine and harmine, have the positive effect of preventing cancer cells in cultures used for cancer research, and that these substances affect the biochemical processes that are crucial to the treatment of cancer in-vitro as well as in-vivo. The reports available about people with experience from ayahuasca in the treatment of cancer should be taken seriously. The hypothesis is that the combination of (beta-carboline) alkaloids and dimethyltryptamine present in ayahuasca blocks the transportation of nutrients to tumours, lessens the dividing process of cancer cells, and changes the unbalanced mutation-causing metabolism in cancer cells.”

A recent study by Icahn School of Medicine, New York, singled out harmine (from the ayahuasca Caapi plant) among 100.000 substances, as the only one able to cause beta cells in the pancreas (the internal organ that produces insulin) to regenerate, a discovery of great interest to diabetes researchers. Other evidence suggest that ayahuasca may have the potential to regenerate several different types of cells, in many places in the body where needed, the specifics of which calls for medical research in many areas – especially neurodegenerative diseases without a known cure to this date. There is also a growing interest in exploring the cell regenerative properties of these plants in spinal cord injury research. Harmine in ayahuasca has also been found to regulate glutamate pump expression in the central nervous system, thereby reducing glutamate toxicity – one of the causes believed to trigger and aggravate ALS through excitotoxic reactions occuring through excessive receptor stimulation by neurotransmitters.

What was previously controversial about ayahuasca, was that the plants in question used to be thought of simply as so called hallucinogens by western science. In other words, these medicinal plants of great importance, were neglected by the scientific community and thought of simply as if they were natural drugs. A more accurate term for these plants, in respect to the indigenous culture in which ayahuasca is a part, would be “entheogens” – meaning plants used in a context sacred to the native people, inducing spiritually oriented experiences (explained from their own perspective and worldview). In several countries, such as Peru, ayahuasca is fully legal and accepted as a complement to conventional medicine, and during recent decade, western countries have to an increasing degree changed a former unfounded and faulty attitude towards entheogens such as ayahuasca, as more studies of entheogenic plants have been completed with positive outcome.

Along several other similar harmala-alkaloids found in B. Caapi, harmaline is a monoamine oxidase inhibitor. Monoamine oxidase (MAO) is an enzyme in the body that breaks down signal substances (such as serotonin). The inhibition of MAO allows the signal substance to remain in the synapse for a longer period of time. Many anti-depressants work in a similar manner, as they stimulate receptors in a targeted area. However, the alkaloids present in ayahuasca should not be compared to antidepressants, as they are not exactly comparable though they both have the ability to affect the same receptors. A comparison is that Caapi alkaloids and antidepressants have the same type of delivery system, but different contents. The biochemical properties of plants used in ayahuasca, and the effects they cause on a multitude of bodily functions remain unique to these plants alone. Various types of harmala alkaloids exert suppression of neurotoxic metabolites, such as quinolinic acid and kynurenine – metabolites correlating with ALS, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and Huntington’s disease, all in which elevated levels of given metabolites are found and thought to contribute to onset of disease through interaction with spinal motor neurons.

harmaline_3d_mid

Harmaline together with harmine and tetrahydroharmine, all forms of mao-inhibitors, are the main components in the medicinal plant Banisteriopsis Caapi

molecules

Comparison between Dimethyltryptamine, Psilocin- and Serotonin-molecules (Psilocybin being the precursor to Psilocin)

Ayahuasca in itself is proven unharmful, its compounds being non-toxic, although temporary side effects such as nausea and vertigo are common when used in amounts above medicinal purposes. However, combining certain medical drugs with MAO-inhibitors (such as the ones found in ayahuasca) can be dangerous, even lethal in some cases. This means that in order to safely consume ayahuasca, it must not be combined with any counterindicated pharmaceutical drugs, and those suffering from certain health conditions such as epilepsy or high blood pressure are adviced to either refrain from use or to proceed only with caution and supervision. Uncomfortable side effects from ayahuasca are greatly dose dependent, and a smaller amount consumed for medicinal purpose can thus easily equal few if any side effects experienced.

When searching for information about ayahuasca, a few negative articles can be found, emotionally angled (understandably so), since they tell stories of unfortunate tourists who on their own, or having been duped into doing so, drink something entirely else than ayahuasca – for instance the toxic plant datura, or liquid made from tobacco plant – with serious outcome to their health (including death in a few known cases, from apparent nicotine poisoning). This leads to fear and misinformation, and is not only tragic for the diseased and their families, but also for the natural medicine community trying to promote safe and responsible use of natural medicine for health benefits, and treatment of diseases that regular medical care have failed providing options for. Sensationalistic headlines making unfounded claims, written by people without any knowledge about ethnobotanical medicine, will definitely not help neither ALS patients or people searching for information, and only makes medicinal plant research more difficult. In several countries, including Peru, Brazil and Costa Rica, established retreats offer ayahuasca treatment where the correct plants are harvested (and sometimes organically grown on the property) and prepared by experienced botanists.

B. Caapi growth stages.

One of the earliest studies on B. Caapi were done in the 1920’s, and involved patients with Parkinsons’s disease. The patients experienced great symptom relief in early trials, but unfortunately the research was prematurely discontinued due to lack of profit potential – as substances already present in natural plants could not be applicable for patents useful to pharmaceutical companies.

Ayahuasca therapy is likely to gain further attention in coming years, but is already well established in some places. Should discoveries eventually lead to production of a therapeutic pharmaceutical drug derived from these plants, it would take many years until a final widespread and established product reaches and helps actual patients. The process from studies, through trials, to eventual launch of an approved pharmaceutical made for use in the medical care system, is slow due to obvious reasons. The real and interesting fact is that ayahuasca in its natural form is something already available to people with diagnoses lacking other treatment options. For those who can and want to use ayahuasca, there is, while not in any way guaranteed, a possibility for improvement that is still real. As in many other cases, individual results vary, and there should be an emphasis on not overly promoting this medicine (and thereby people’s hope) while questions and work remain. There is also the importance of emphasizing and thereby minimizing the risks involved concerning contraindications with other medications and conditions. Awaiting further studies, this information should still be worth the attention of those suffering from a debilitating progressive disease such as ALS, and researchers in medical science.

My personal connection to this topic and project, was the passing of a close friends’ mother in ALS which occured in 2012. The course of her disease was rapid and aggressive, and unfortunately several of the now available studies referred to in this article, were not yet published at the time. This led me into investigating biochemical aspects of entheogenic plant medicine in search for treatment of neurological disease, and making information on the topic publicly available, while connecting it to a study currently in progress.

B. Caapi is legally obtainable in most countries and states much in the same way as other known herbal remedies, such as Echinacea and Ginseng. However, as with any other potent natural supplement, it is up to the consumer to use and combine supplements and herbal remedies in an informed and responsible way. In the same way as conventional pharmaceuticals, natural medicines should always be treated with proper respect. One commonly known species that actually contains small amounts of harmala alkaloids is passion flower, or passion fruit tree, although the concentrations in its leaf foliage and flowers are far too low (and the fruit contains none) to be used effectively for monoamine oxidase inhibition and ayahuasca purposes. Also, while similar to some degree, the alkaloid profile in terms of proportions and molecular structural deviations between distinct alkaloids does not match up exactly with that of B. Caapi, making the two species related from a certain aspect, but far from equal regarding their medicinal properties. Extracts from various passiflora species are however produced and sold worldwide as mild herbal relaxants and sleeping aids, and as an antispasmodic for treating Parkinson’s.

The substance known as dimethyltryptamine, found in plants traditionally added to ayahuasca, is regulated by law in a number of countries classified as a scheduled substance. (Questionably so, due to medicinal value in multiple areas). This particular substance contained in the additional aforementioned plants induces the altered state of consciousness, a many times misunderstood and stigmatized phenomenon. A description of this altered state is that it is dreamlike, that it stimulates memory and the ability to think abstract, and has self-therapeutic qualities. Even though dimethyltryptamine is naturally occuring in the human body, thought to be produced in small amounts by the pineal gland in the brain during sleep, it remains an illegal substance in a number of western countries since the 1960’s and 70’s, when lawmakers prematurely criminalized almost any substances suspected of having any effect on the mind, including natural ones, due to the widespread moral panic at the time – regardless of the fact that many of them, including dimethyltryptamine, were never proven unhealthy, having in fact been used by indigenous people, in the form extracted from plants, to successfully treat diseases and health problems for centuries. Leaf juice from Chacruna has been used traditionally as a remedy for migraines and ant bites, and Jurema bark for treating burn wounds – significantly quickening regeneration of skin and scar tissue. Dimethyltryptamine also targets chaperone sigma 1, a receptor subtype expressed in both neurons and glia of multiple regions within the central nervous system, with capacity to modulate biological mechanisms implicated with neurodegeneration. Sigma 1-receptors present compelling targets for pharmacologically treating neurodegenerative disorders, and dimethyltryptamine acts as an endogenous Sigma-1 receptor regulator, but interactions between the two in association with motor neuron disease is not understood.

Although, several european countries have redefined their policy regarding many formerly frowned upon medicinal plants in recent years, much due to an increasing awareness and access to new and unbiased information and up-to-date research regarding these plants. In Scandinavia, Sami natives from Sapmi, Sweden, were recently aquitted from all charges in the court of law, for having brought Peruvian medicinal cactus into the country. The court established that natural plant material alone cannot be defined as a scheduled substance, and that the therapeutic work involved people were doing, which included Echinopsis Pachanoi cactus, was indeed not a criminal act, but served the purpose to help and heal people. Another similar case with the same outcome involved ayahuasca additive plants. Cacti from the Echinopsis and Lophophora species are known for their restorative and cleansing effects on the body, and are used as such in ethnobotanical medicine.

To be precise, the definition of Ayahuasca is any tea made from either the plant Banisteriopsis Caapi alone, or from B. Caapi and additional plants containing dimethyltryptamine. A tea made from B. Caapi alone does not have what is sometimes referred to as “visionary” qualities, as only the addition of dimethyltryptamine from additive plants, or actually the combination of mao-inhibiting alkaloids in B. Caapi together with dimethyltryptamine content induces a state of mind formerly mislabeled “hallucinogenic”. It needs to be clarified that this word brings up negative associations in many people, and is thus feared and misunderstood. Unlike what some people tend to think, one does not hallucinate things appearing out of thin air after having consumed ayahuasca, but rather there are sequences of inner dreamlike visions taking place while resting, while still awake and fully conscious, provided a significant amount of tea has been consumed. It is actually quite undramatic, aside from the unpleasant vomiting which does affect some people (which is entirely intentional in traditional in cleansing rituals).

And herein lies the essence many times misunderstood: It does not take a great amount of ayahuasca to experience strictly its medicinal effects – without abstractions and visionary effects, or nausea/vomiting which naturally people want to avoid. Several medicinal health benefits can be obtained even by using B. Caapi alone – without additive plants, thereby ensuring no visual effects experienced at all, should this be desired. It should be noted though, that the synergistic effect between the two plants used simultaneously will bring the best medicinal and bodily response. Exaggerations regarding ayahuasca made these medicinal plants overlooked for many years in the west, but the reputation has been revised as more people with experience in a medicinal context have made statements, claiming the medicinal value of ayahuasca relevant to medical conditions of different types – the field of neurological disease being the latest. Ayahuasca has already been effectively used for symptom relief from Multiple Sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis, by a growing number of people in Europe since at least 2006. ALS, Multiple Sclerosis, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease all share a lot of common ground, being that they all involve varieties of nerve cell degeneration. Thus it is likely that any type of natural broad spectrum medicine able to affect the process of nerve cell regeneration, and that also has substantially antioxidative and cell protective properties, could prevent and slow the progression of neurological disease in general.

Whatever wild or strange stories about ayahuasca that may occasionally be found circulating, they stem mostly from people who went to live with native tribes during the late 80’s and early 90’s, taking part in traditional ceremonial use of ayahuasca – consuming exceptionally generous or concentrated amounts of the medicine, enfolding themselves in deep cleansing experiences not necessarily easily endured. This medicine, like all others, should definitely be well respected, but not subject to exaggeration or downright misrepresentation – causing people to dismiss what they are simply uneducated about, which in turn may lead to people never getting treatment that could slow the progression of their terminal health condition, or in some cases even reverse it. The vivid and fascinating visions induced by strong tea often seem to have a theme rooted in nature, perhaps tied into the underlying psychological expectations associated with the revered history of ayahuasca itself, as depicted quite beautifully in colorful paintings by Peruvian artist Pablo Amaringo (1938-2009). The visions arise from the simple fact that the alkaloids and tryptamines dissolved in the tea, combine to affect receptors that in turn stimulate the processing of memory relating to images and words – noticeably of relevance to Alzheimer’s research.

Ayahuasca is proven non-addictive, and is even used to aid people in breaking their drug dependencies, as ayahuasca has a detoxifying and documented effect of ridding the user of drug related abstinence issues.

MAO-inhibition makes uptake of dimethyltryptamine in the body possible, unable to occur otherwise as dimethyltryptamine without MAO-inhibition is rapidly broken down by enzymes in the stomach, unable to cause effect. Dimethyltryptamine is almost molecularly identical to the above mentioned psilocybin from Dr. Ramos research. Researchers think that psilocybin and dimethyltryptamine binds to brain receptors that stimulate growth and healing, acting on the hippocampus, a part of the brain that is essential to learning and forming memories, recieving sensory impulses and that has target cells and receptors for important signal substances. Hippocampus atrophy occurs when nerve cells die, or when abnormal levels of stress hormones prevent neurogenesis, and is a known sign in Parkinson’s disease. It is theorized that the unique combination of a variety of harmala-alkaloids from B. Caapi, and dimethyltryptamine from additional plant sources used in ayahuasca, work on cellular level to repair and restore nerve cells, stimulate and enhance motor neuron transmission, and to protect remaining nerve cells from degeneration. This is without doubt valuable from a neuromedical perspective.

 

Ayahuasca plants as packaged and sold in health food stores, Peru. Note the attached traceable source information and datemark. Various strains of this particular vine are available, each having a slightly different, but similar alkaloid profile.

As the non regulated B. Caapi alone has proven positive abilities, potentially effective against neurological and cancer diseases, it is thus something real and available that may be a valid treatment option. For anyone who experience positive results to any degree, but does not live in a state or country where the use of plants containing dimethyltryptamine is permitted, there is the possibility to travel to one of the many countries (or states) which by law allows the use of added secondary plants with their combined medicinal properties for evalution of full-spectrum ayahuasca treatment. In Europe, Spain is one of several countries where ayahuasca is becoming an established therapy, and Spain is also the chosen location for an international conference 2014, where ethnopharmacologists, psychologists and researchers from all over the world gather around the topics of ayahuasca and medicinal entheogens.

Among others, Ede Frecska, M.D., Ph.D, University of Debrecen, lectures on the possibilities of recreating braincells and regulating the immune defense system through this plant-based medicine and others. This event is held by ICEERS – International Center for Ethnobotanical Education Research and Service, and can be followed at:

http://www.aya2014.com/en/confirmed-speakers-2/

caapi_examine

Examination of Caapi medicinal vine specimen, World Ayahuasca Conference

Furthermore, besides ability to aid and enhance the process of nerve cellular repair and protection against cell oxidation, several entheogenic plants (and fungi), including ayahuasca, do possess psychotherapeutical qualities as well. Coping with degenerative illness is obviously stressful to patients, and a great deal of emotional relief, personal insight, and ability to better cope with personal situation is achievable through the single or repeated experience of entheogenic medicinal plants/mushrooms in a comfortable and supportive environment, according to renowned Johns Hopkins medical university.

The fact that many of these medicinal plants are becoming revived as they recieve scientific approval, is great news in several ways. Sustainability and environmental issues comes to mind, and so far the outlook remains positive. Many organic farms have developed in south and central america, cultivating ayahuasca plants for both local use and for export, providing work and income for people in rural areas otherwise stricken with poverty. This also serves as a way for numerous local people to reconnect with their cultural past, as ayahuasca is declared a national heritage in Peru among other places.

 

Sustainable ayahuasca plantation, Brazil. These Chacruna trees take several years before reaching their mature height of 2-3 meters.

DMckennaDennis Mckenna, PH.D, one of the world’s most renowned ethnopharmacology researchers speaks on the importance of sustainability, regarding cultivation of ayahuasca and the preservation of rainforests. This should concern all people who benefit from treatment using ayahuasca medicinal plants. Dr. Mckenna is co-founder and director of ethnopharmachology at Heffter Research Institute, New Mexico. He is also a faculty member of the Academic Health Center at the University of Minnesota, and was key organizer in the Hoasca Project, an international biomedical study of ayahuasca, funded by the Stanley Medical Research Institute. While ayahuasca plants take years to mature for harvest, they can actually be grown at home in gardens anywhere in the world where the climate allows, or indoors or in heated greenhouses elsewhere, and the seeds are both cheap and abundant – available from numerous online ethnobotanical vendors worldwide, ensuring the survival of these medicinal plant species and their sustained availability for future generations.

Formerly unknown to science, we are beginning to understand the potential and medicinal aspects of this particular plant, replacing neglect of entheogens with knowledge as scientific groundwork in this matter becomes firm.
People should not be led into thinking this is some kind of natural miracle cure, but used the right way it could provide longterm aid in the restorement of body and mind function in certain neurological conditions. Together we can all  inform people in an unbiased, ethical and safe way about any and all viable treatment options, and about the medicinal and therapeutical value of entheogens in general.

Common sense should be applied to determine dosage in order to ensure a sufficient degree of medicinal activity, while not being harmful or overwhelming. Specific diet is essential in conjunction with ayahuasca, in order to minimize side effects and to maximize utilization of medicinal compounds, and basic knowledge on the process of preparation of the medicine is helpful in order for the plants to synergize correctly. The help and information needed for these purposes, along with protocols for detoxification are individually provided to participants in the below pilot study.

There is currently an ongoing international non-clinical Pilot study involving people diagnosed with ALS, documenting use of this plant medicine, the gathering and evaluation of results being processed.

To follow this project, or if you are interested in joining the study, click on the following link: https://ayahuascatreatment.wordpress.com/2014/09/22/natural-als-treatment-pilot-project/

Ayahuasca has been used for a very long time historically, and only recently for treatment of the conditions brought up in this article. Any substantial health improvement from this natural medicine in cases of motor neuron disease would be likely to reveal itself long-term at first. Initial updates from people participating in the ayahuasca ALS treatment pilot study report a few things in common; wider range of movement, weight gain in muscle mass, muscle tension relief, reduced spasticity and improved strength in affected limbs, though it should be noted that none of the participants had lost all muscle control prior to treatment, and that whether or not this effect turns out to be persistent or permanent is not known at the moment.

Summary of Key Points:

Ayahuasca could effectively be used in treatment of ALS and other motor neuron diseases based on the fact that studies suggest uniquely antioxidative effects that seem to protect brain/nerve cells, targeting motor neurons through a unique biochemical transport system, and that it and other moleculary similar substances, also naturally occuring, stimulate neurogenesis – the development of new brain/nerve cells, and improved neural connectivity. In studies it has been found to reduce symptoms in Parkinsons’s patients – all neurodegenerative diseases share common ground, making it likely that something that improves one major neurological condition could also be beneficial to other closely related conditions. Also based on credible personal accounts from people having used ayahuasca for symptom relief from their multiple sclerosis (once again – the common ground of neurodegenerative diseases), documented in books about ayahuasca, and descriptions of early stage minor improvement by Ayahuasca ALS Treatment study participants, already having used the medicine for a period of time. Studies also indicate ability to normalize metabolism in mitochondria crucial to motor neuron survival, and to regulate and decrease levels of excitotoxicity in the central nervous system.

Ayahuasca and other entheogens can and will gain the credibility and amends they truly deserve, and bring new possibilities to many people living with diseases lacking clinical healthcare treatment options. Until then, these medicinal plants remain available for personal evaluation by individuals who choose to explore the option. In relation to the medical conditions brought up in this article, these plants may hold future keys in becoming a powerful tool for reversal of ALS progression and related conditions. Share this important information if you find it valuable.

To support this study, please use paypal. Any donation no matter amount helps to keep this project alive, and to keep research in progress.

Paypal recipient: ayahuascatreatment@hotmail.compaypaldo.png

References:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828149/pdf/nihms156585.pdf

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2828149/

(Ayahuasca and neurological disease)

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4773875/

(Neurotherapeutic ayahuasca potential in pharmacology)

https://academic.oup.com/ijnp/article/20/9/698/3835428

(Neurotransmission increase and ayahuasca induced reduction of neurotoxic metabolites study)

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0019264

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110526131244.htm

(Ayahuasca harmala-alkaloids and Alzheimer’s disease study)

http://www.sram.org/media/documents/uploads/article_pdfs/5-3-01-Serrano-Duenas.pdf

(B. Caapi and Parkinson’s disease)

http://beckleyfoundation.org/2016/06/16/ayahuasca-stimulates-the-birth-of-new-brain-cells-latest-findings-from-the-beckleysant-pau-research-programme/

(Ayahuasca neurogenesis study)

http://www.stichtingopen.nl/en/component/content/article/research/study-shows-no-evidence-of-adverse-mental-health-effects-in-long-term-ayahuasca-users

http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0042421

(Study proving ayahuasca safe from a health point of view, and to not have any longterm side effects)

http://smo.sagepub.com/content/1/2050312113508389.full

(Ayahuasca cancer research)

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2014/07/03/psychedelic-drugs-put-your-brain-in-a-waking-dream-study-finds/

(Psilocybin study showing increased memory function in subjects)

http://health.usf.edu/medicine/neurology/faculty/sanchez_ramos.htm

(Dr. Juan Ramos profile)

(Psilocybin brain research)

http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0042421

(Study proving regular intake of ayahuasca leading to increased longterm wellbeing and general mental health)

http://iceers.org

(ICEERS – International center for ethnobotanical education research and service)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23627784
http://bitnest.ca/external.php?id=%257DbxUgY%255CC%2540%251BD%252A%253A-D%251BU%255BP%2500JIqc%2560%2515T
(Canadian studies of ayahuasca as treatment for drug/alcohol abuse)

http://www.heffter.org/research-jhus.htm

(Johns Hopkins university studies on the the therapeutical benefits of psilocybin medicinal mushrooms)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6682439

(Echinopsis and Lophophora cactus central nervous system study)

http://bioweb.uwlax.edu/bio203/2011/toellner_kayl/Medical.htm

(Lophophora cactus medicinal properties)

http://www.newsweek.com/chemical-ayahuasca-has-potential-treat-diabetes-313780

(Ayahuasca diabetes research)

https://vimeo.com/39251248

(Dr. Gabor Maté on Ayahuasca and stress related disease)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aufjjU0EYxk

(Ayahuasca and neural pathway redevelopment in the neocortex)

http://www.iceers.org/docs/science/ayahuasca/ICEERS2012_Ayahuasca_literature_compilation.pdf

(Compilation of scientific literature on ayahuasca)

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3220934/

(Harmine and glutamate transporter expression study)

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1347861314000267

(Role of Sigma 1-receptors in neurodegenerative diseases)

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/24004971_The_Hallucinogen_NN-Dimethyltryptamine_DMT_Is_an_Endogenous_Sigma-1_Receptor_Regulator

(Publication on dimethyltryptamine and Sigma 1-receptor regulation)

http://www.movementdisorders.org/MDS/Journals/Clinical-Practice-E-Journal-Overview/Movement-Disorders-Clinical-Practice-Vol-3-Issue-1/

(B. Caapi Postencephalitic Parkinsonism therapy)