Psychedelics Genetic Test Called Into Question
Vice’s Shayla Love today published a deep dive into a DNA test that claims to help users “learn how [their] genetics can affect [their] psychedelics response.” The test is marketed by HaluGen, a subsidiary of Entheon Biomedical.
In this article, the validity and utility of the test are interrogated via consultation with researchers in relevant fields. The overall verdict is that the kit is, at best, not particularly useful. At worst, the test “is a potentially dangerous product,” according to Professor Charles Nichols.
Among other fundamental issues, the kit tests for certain genes that, according to Love and the experts she interviews, “have been thoroughly ruled out as candidate genes” for indications such as schizophrenia, bipolar, and psychosis.
“There are people putting millions of dollars into trying to develop these kinds of tests and assays,” Nichols said. “I think this kind of product is really taking advantage, and almost predatory, of people who want this kind of information but don’t understand how complex the question is that they’re trying to answer.”
Read the full piece on VICE.
Video: Can Psychedelics Heal if There’s No Trip?
In this panel, Gul Dolen, David Nichols, and David Olson discuss (read: debate) whether the subjective effects of psychedelics are necessary to their apparent therapeutic benefits.
Watch the video on YouTube.