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Charles Nichols

Charles Nichols

Louisiana State University
USA

Dr. Nichols currently is a professor of pharmacology at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, LA. He earned his B.S. at Purdue University, his Ph.D. at Carnegie Mellon University studying the developmental genetics of fruit fly eye and retina development, and performed his postdoctoral work at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in the Department of Pharmacology researching serotonin 5-HT2 receptor neuropharmacology under the mentorship of Dr. Elaine Sanders-Bush. He has been studying the cellular, molecular, genetic, and behavioral effects of psychedelics for nearly 25 years and is considered one of the world’s top experts on the biological effects of psychedelics in the brain and body. He is a founding member of the International Society for Research on Psychedelics, and its current President-Elect. Charles is also scientific co-founder of Eleusis Therapeutics, which is dedicated to unlocking the full potential of psychedelics both in and beyond psychiatry. Key discoveries he has made include elucidation of the effects of psychedelics on gene expression in the brain, identification and characterization of the specific cells in the brain that directly respond to psychedelics, and the development of new rodent and fruit fly experimental systems recapitulating the long-lasting antidepressant-like effects of psilocybin for mechanistic study. Dr. Nichols has also discovered that psychedelics are extremely potent anti-inflammatory agents, and can have full efficacy at levels far below those necessary to induce behavioral effects. Data in preclinical models show efficacy in models of cardiovascular and metabolic disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and asthma. Focusing on allergic asthma, mechanistic studies have revealed complex anti-inflammatory effects on several targets including Th2 cells, eosinophils, and macrophages, among others. These data together are driving a drug