Does psilocybin increase neuroplasticity


Psilocybin indeed increases neuroplasticity. According to , both structural and functional plasticity are observed in the human and animal brain following psilocybin administration. This involves the growth of new dendritic spines and the addition or strengthening of new neural connections, predominantly in the frontal cortex, but also potentially in other brain areas like the visual cortex and subcortical regions 1 2 3.

Neurogenesis and Neuroplasticity

Andrew Huberman explains that while neurogenesis is not the dominant mode of changing neural circuitry in adult humans, psilocybin and other psychedelics induce neuroplasticity largely through the addition or strengthening of new neural connections or through the elimination or weakening of other neural connections. The mechanistic basis for psilocybin-induced neuroplasticity is mostly focused on animal models, particularly mice and rats.

Huberman Lab

How Psilocybin Can Rewire Our Brain, Its Therapeutic Benefits & Its Risks | Huberman Lab Podcast

He notes that the effects are often seen after therapeutic doses, ranging from 10 to 30 milligrams per session. These structural changes can persist beyond the active presence of psilocybin in the brain, potentially explaining the prolonged therapeutic benefits observed in some individuals 4.

Psilocybin achieves these neuroplastic effects primarily by activating the serotonin 2A receptors, leading to increased serotonin levels, which in turn facilitate broader brain connectivity and plasticity 5 6. The therapeutic window for these effects can be influenced by various factors, including the dosage and the specific conditions under which the psilocybin is consumed 7 8.

Overall, emphasizes that while psilocybin stimulates neuroplasticity, it is crucial for this plasticity to be adaptive to ensure it provides therapeutic benefits 3.