A new alliance aiming to help hone the therapeutic potential of psychedelics is set to emerge from Europe, making its debut via a virtual event later this month.
The Psychedelic Access and Research European Alliance (PAREA) is a group founded in 2022 and comprised of 15 organizations with common goals in the field of mental health and psychedelics.
The company announced its formation via a new Twitter page back in May and has since had prominent member organizations like Pain Alliance Europe help spread the word about its launch.
We are equally excited about the inaugural launch of the Psychedelic Access and Research European Alliance! Closing remarks and the launch of a Call to Action 📢will be delivered by @thatdeirdreryan, @PareaScience Vice-Chair and @pain_europe President. Register via the link⬇️ https://t.co/na1IR6dgOa
— Pain Alliance Europe (@pain_europe) June 10, 2022
The group advocates the urgent need for psychedelics, citing that mental health has become a serious societal crisis because we are lacking sufficient treatment options.
Mission goals for this vast new organization include promoting research to help generate clinical evidence for the efficacy of psychedelic therapy, increasing collaboration between scientists and policymakers and ensuring legal and affordable access to safe and effective psychedelic-assisted treatments once they become available.
Groups joining the PAREA alliance include neuropsychopharmacologists and cancer societies, European Union patient advocacy groups specializing in mental health and neurology, various scientific associations, psychedelic foundations and other industry partners.
The list of founding member groups includes the Association of European Cancer Leagues, the Osmond Foundation, the European Brain Council, the Global Alliance of Mental Illness Advocacy Networks – Europe and several others.
The official launch of the organization will be taking place on June 23 at 2 pm. Prominent speakers present at the event will include Dr. Thomas R. Insel – a former director of the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health, Professor Gitte Moos Knudsen – President of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology and Dr. Sara Cerdas – a member of the European parliament.
Although there are many people who are able to function thanks to anti-depressants, the group says those products have an assortment of unpleasant and unwanted side effects. PAREA also mentions that according to the World Health Organization (WHO), merely 2 per cent of general expenditure globally is dedicated to mental health.
“Against this backdrop, psychedelic-assisted therapies (PAT) show a promise of being a potent new class of treatments for mental, neurological and substance use disorders, as suggested by the rapidly growing, rigorous, and compelling body of research,” said PAREA event organizers.
Leading up to the present day, PAREA cites some essential breakthroughs that have helped pave the way toward the formation of the organization.
Those milestones include the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granting Breakthrough Therapy designation for three studies examining the potential of MDMA in treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and psilocybin for aiding depression between 2017-2019.
The other noteworthy milestones occurred when Imperial College London in the United Kingdom (U.K.) pioneered the establishment of a center dedicated to research on psychedelic substances. Shortly after, top-notch American Universities like the University of California, John Hopkins and New York University followed suit with similar facilities.
“The renaissance of research into the neuroscience and therapeutic applications of PAT represents one of the most promising and important initiatives in brain science and neuropsychopharmacology in recent times, especially given the huge unmet needs in the therapeutic areas that they promise to treat,” – PAREA.
See the event schedule below:
PAREA Launch Agenda
Welcome: Prof. David Nutt, PAREA Chair
Opening keynote address: Prof. Thomas R. Insel, Former Director of the US National Institute of Mental Health
Opening remarks from the EU policy maker: Dr. Sara Cerdas, Member of the European Parliament
Testimonial from a participant in psychedelic-assisted therapy
Psychedelic medicines + Audience Q&A: Prof. Gitte Moos Knudsen, University of Copenhagen and President of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology
PAREA: Who, Why, What?: Tadeusz Hawrot: PAREA Founder and Policy Lead
In discussion with the EU and PAREA members + Audience Q&A: Panel moderated by Frederic Destrebecq, PAREA Vice-Chair and European Brain Council Executive Director
Closing remarks and launch of a Call to Action: Deirdre Ryan, PAREA Vice-Chair and Pain Alliance Europe President