Translational research investigating psilocybin: underlying neurobiological mechanisms

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisInternal

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This dissertation has taken an interdisciplinary approach to investigate and give insights into psilocybin’s neurobiological underpinnings. Psilocybin is a naturally occurring serotonergic psychedelic and is the main ingredient in hallucinogenic mushrooms. Research has demonstrated
that psilocybin profoundly activates the serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine) 2A (5-HT2A) receptors. Upon activation of these receptors in the brain, psilocybin induces profound perceptual changes such as hallucinations and illusions, altering one’s self-perception, bodily image and mood.
There is a growing interest in psilocybin’s therapeutic utility, focusing on psychiatric disorders, such as treatment-resistant depression. Despite psilocybin’s therapeutic potential, the underlying neurobiological mechanisms of psilocybin remain elusive. Therefore, this dissertation aimed to understand and delineate the acute dose-dependent effects of psilocybin on an epigenetic, neurobiological and cognitive level.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Maastricht University
  • University of Genoa
  • Prickaerts, Jos, Supervisor
  • Ramaekers, Jan, Supervisor
  • Fedele, Ernesto, Supervisor, External person
  • Briedé, Jacco, Co-Supervisor
Award date20 Jan 2023
Place of PublicationMaastricht
Print ISBNs9789464730159
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • psilocybin
  • cognition
  • circulating miRNAs
  • translational research


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