At this time MDMA is illegal in Canada and we do not provide any clinical services or advice related to MDMA-Assisted Therapy

Thank you MAPS for 35 years of hard work!

Darek Dawda
• April 12, 2021

Imagine 35 years ago. Just as the FDA is about to place the love drug MDMA on Schedule 1 (Totally bad!!! Totally illegal!!!), Rick Doblin, whose heart grew a few sizes too big (I imagine partially because of MDMA), decides that the way to bring MDMA to therapy is not through underground practices but through legal means.

So Rick starts a non-profit called the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Studies, and embarks on a long uncertain journey into the future. Here’s an abbreviated timeline of what MAPS did during 35 years of hard work (from MAPS website @ )


Rick Doblin founded MAPS as an official 501(c)(3) non-profit research organization on April 8, 1986. Later that year, Doblin sued the DEA for the first time.


Following MAPS’ first year as a non-profit organization, support for MDMA research increased and MAPS collaborated on a study protocol with researchers at Johns Hopkins University.


MAPS Founder Rick Doblin, Ph.D., published the first edition of the MAPS Bulletin, titled “MDMA Can Become a Legal Medicine,” and the FDA rejected the second MDMA study protocol submitted by MAPS.


MAPS continued to publish Bulletin articles about MDMA researchrequests for donations, and discontinuing animal studies. A study on neuroendocrine and mood responses to intravenous L-tryptophan in MDMA users was also published.


The FDA formed a new group to oversee psychedelic research protocols, opening the doors to modern psychedelic science. Regulation or Prohibition: Psychedelics in the 1990s became the first major psychedelic conference hosted by MAPS.


MAPS announced the first protocol for MDMA-assisted therapy in terminal cancer participants suffering from clinically diagnosed anxiety and depression, and MAPS received a $10,000 donation toward an annual budget of less than $50,000.


The FDA formally decided to open the door to psychedelic research in human participants, and later accepted MAPS’ Phase 1 MDMA safety and tolerance study protocol.


MAPS hired Sylvia Thyssen as our first employee, celebrated the 50th anniversary of LSD, outlined perspectives on drug policy, and worked toward facilitating a pilot study for medical marijuana.


MAPS revealed our organizational strategy, introduced our clinical plan for marijuana research, and started exploring the possibility of conducting research in Israel. Members of Congress voiced support for marijuana/AIDS research.


MAPS initiated a study on the efficacy of ketamine-assisted psychotherapy for heroin dependence in Russia and resumed working on a protocol for MDMA-assisted therapy for anxiety associated with cancer.


MAPS completed the first Phase 1 safety study with MDMA and resumed working on a protocol for anxiety associated with cancer. The first medical marijuana bills were passed in California and Arizona.


MAPS published our first book, The Secret Chief: Conversations with a Pioneer of the Underground Psychedelic Therapy Movement by Myron J. Stolaroff. Researcher Donald Abrams received a $1 million grant to study the risks of marijuana.


MAPS Founder Rick Doblin published a 34-year follow-up study to Timothy Leary’s Concord Prison Experiment, which involved administration of psilocybin-assisted group therapy to prisoners in an effort to reduce recidivism.


MAPS initiated the world’s first clinical trial to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD, which took place in Madrid, Spain.


Rick Doblin, Ph.D., and Michael Mithoefer, M.D., met for the first time and decided to work on MDMA/PTSD research in the U.S. The Spanish Ministry of Health accepted the first-ever controlled study of the therapeutic use of MDMA, later to be shut down.


The FDA received MAPS’ protocol for a new study of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD. Lyle Craker, Ph.D., submitted his first DEA application to manufacture marijuana for use in medical research.


George Ricaurte published a paper on the neurotoxic effects of MDMA in primates, which was later retracted due to a drug labeling error. Media coverage of the paper led to a new stigma and political pressure ended the Spain MDMA study.


The journal Science retracted George Ricaurte’s paper on the neurotoxic effects of MDMA in primates after MAPS sent multiple letters to the journal and an investigation revealed that the data were invalid due to a drug labeling error.


The first shipment of research-grade MDMA arrived for MAPS’ trial of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD, MAPS sued the DEA for obstructing marijuana research, and Peter Jennings’ Ecstasy Rising documentary improved public perception of MDMA.


MAPS submitted a protocol of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD in Switzerland, hearings were initiated for MAPS’ lawsuit against the DEA for obstructing marijuana research, and the Catharsis on the Mall event was envisioned by MAPS Founder Rick Doblin, Ph.D.


MAPS initiated new Phase 2 clinical trials of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD in Switzerland and Israel, celebrated Albert Hofmann’s 100th birthday, and published two new educational books.


MAPS and Dr. Peter Gasser initiated a Phase 2 clinical trial of LSD-assisted psychotherapy for the treatment of anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness in Switzerland.


shipment of LSD arrived in Switzerland for our study of LSD-assisted psychotherapy for anxiety associated with advanced-stage illness. CNN and Dr. Sanjay Gupta produced a TV report about the potential benefits of MDMA-assisted therapy.


Health Canada agreed to the protocol for a study of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD in Vancouver. Members of the U.S. Congress wrote letters in support of Lyle Craker’s application to grow marijuana for medical research.


MAPS published strong results from the first Phase 2 pilot study of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD and we increased work on securing a DEA permit for Lyle Craker to cultivate marijuana for research and break the government monopoly on the supply of research-grade marijuana. MAPS also started research into ibogaine for opiate addiction.


MAPS started research into ayahuasca for addiction, and the late Ashawna Hailey provided a donation of $5.5 million in the form of a bequest.


The Zendo Project was created by MAPS to provide psychedelic peer support, harm reduction, and education for the Burning Man community in Black Rock City, Nevada.


MAPS published promising results from our studies of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD in Switzerland and ayahuasca for addiction. Over 1,500 people from around the world attended MAPS’ Psychedelic Science 2013 conference in Oakland, CA.


MAPS published results from the first study of LSD therapy in over 40 years. Later that year, MAPS received a $2 million grant from the state of Colorado for marijuana research and MAPS Public Benefit Corporation (MAPS PBC) was founded.


The MDMA Therapy Training Program was created to train the next generation of psychedelic therapists. Reddit awarded $82,765.95 to MAPS and nine other non-profit organizations chosen by the Reddit community.


MAPS initiated a study of Cognitive-Behavioral Conjoint Therapy (CBCT) integrated with MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD in couples. The MAPS community raised over $140,000 in donations by hosting more than 80 Global Psychedelic Dinners.


The FDA granted breakthrough therapy designation to MDMA for the treatment of PTSD, MAPS published results from studies of ibogaine for opiate addiction, Dr. Bronner’s pledged $5 million to MAPS, and 3,000 people attended Psychedelic Science 2017.


MAPS successfully raised $8 million through the completion of the Pineapple Fund’s $4 million matching grantHow to Change Your Mind by Michael Pollan highlighted MAPS’ research and introduced a wide audience to psychedelic science.


MAPS Founder Rick Doblin, Ph.D., presented the first official TED Talk about psychedelics. MAPS published results from the combined analysis of six Phase 2 studies of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD.


The FDA agreed to an expanded access program for MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD, MAPS donors raised $30 million for psychedelic research during the Capstone Campaign, and we announced the positive result from our first Phase 3 trial.


In 2021, MAPS will be publishing the full results from our first Phase 3 clinical trial of MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD and launching a new membership program for donors. MAPS continues to be a leader in the field of psychedelic science.

Through support from our community, we have achieved many great things. Thank you so much for being with us on this journey.

Thank you MAPS! Now imagine 35 years from now!!!



Enhanced Therapy Newsletter

Updates on Enhanced Therapy research, legalization, general information, and trivia

Julie Holland


Dr. Julie Holland is a psychiatrist and psychopharmacologist, and author of the New York Times bestseller “Moody Bitches” and “Weekends at Bellevue”. She is the editor of two non-profit books: “Ecstasy: The Complete Guide” and “The Pot Book: A Complete Guide to Cannabis”. While now a medical advisor to MAPS, she was a medical monitor for several clinical studies examining the efficacy of using MDMA-assisted psychotherapy or cannabis in the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Her newest book is “Good Chemistry: The Science of Connection, From Soul to Psychedelics”.

Mark Haden


• Adjunct professor at the University of British Columbia School of Public and Population Health.
• Executive Director of MAPS Canada (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies).
• Has published on the issue of drug control policy and psychedelics in the following Journals:

  • Canadian Journal of Public Health
  • International Journal of Drug Policy
  • Encyclopaedia of Public Health
  • Harm Reduction Journal
  • Open Medicine
  • Journal of Psychoactive Drugs
  • Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs

• Teaches in the UBC school of medicine (Population and Public Health)
• Obtained an MSW from UBC
• Worked for the Addiction Services for 28 years in counselling and supervisory roles.
• Has provided public education on drugs and drug policy for over 30 years.
• Works with the Health Officers Council of British Columbia on their position papers on the issue of a regulated market for all currently illegal drugs.
• Has presented in conferences and training events in many countries
• Awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for drug policy reform work in 2013.

We have donated to support Dr. Anne Wagner’s upcoming study, and we encourage you to do the same. Dr. Wagner is a Canadian psychologist who is currently starting world’s largest to date study aimed at future legalization of MDMA-Assisted Therapy for Relationships. Donating to support this study is the most direct way you can advance the future legalization of Enhanced Therapy for Relationships. Your donation is tax deductible and all funds go directly (via MAPS Canada) to Dr. Anne Wagner’s study. 

Donating is a direct way to influence change.

Contact Us

At this time, we do not provide services or advice related to MDMA-Assisted Therapy, and we do not respond to emails seeking advice or services. We recommend you SUBSCRIBE to our newsletter for upcoming developments. 

Neil McArthur


My current teaching and research focuses on philosophy and sexuality, in particular on sexual ethics. I write regularly about sex for VICE. I also have a blog available to read:, or you can follow me on Twitter: My research also includes the history of political philosophy, in particular the political philosophy of the British Enlightenment. My book David Hume’s Political Theory was published in 2007.

In addition to philosophy, I am also interested in film-making. My films have played at numerous festivals, including the Toronto World-Wide Short Film Festival, the DOXA Festival (Vancouver), and the Calgary International Film Festival – more information is available at I have also recently performed a one-person show at both the Toronto and Winnipeg Fringe Festivals. You can read more about that here:

Darek Dawda

Ph.D., C.Psych.

Darek Dawda is a clinical psychologist in private practice in Winnipeg with extensive experience working with trauma and couples. He has been helping Manitobans over 15 years, using a multitude of scientifically validated treatment methods, including CBT, mindfulness, meditation, and focussing.

Darek is the founder of Enhanced Therapy Institute, an information, research, and training hub for future delivery of MDMA-Assisted Therapy. He has special interest is assuring a safe, ethical, and effective delivery of Enhanced Therapy in a medical context, and developing specialized ethical and standard of practice guidelines for Canadian psychologists. He is also invested in developing an Enhanced Relationship Therapy model, and using MDMA to heal relationships, once such treatment is scientifically validated and legalized in the medical context.

Darek believes in a world in which optimal conditions exist for all living creatures to live safe and fulfilling lives. He considers the global health of our eco-system and the growing tribal rifts to be today’s most important issues. He hopes that Enhanced Relationship Therapy will one day play a role in healing our relationship to ourselves, to each other (including our leaders), and to our natural environment

Zach Walsh


Zach Walsh is a clinical psychologist, a Research Affiliate with the BC Centre on Substance Use, and an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of British Columbia, where he directs the Therapeutic, Recreational, and Problematic Substance Use lab.  He has published and presented widely on topics related to psychedelics, cannabis, mental health and psychotherapy.  He is an investigator on several clinical trials of psychedelics and cannabis, including the MAPS sponsored study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD, and upcoming trials of psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy for problematic substance use. Zach’s clinical focus is on the application of “third wave” mindfulness-based behavior therapies to address trauma, relationship conflict, and problematic substance use. 

Jazmin Pirozek


Jazmin is of Kinosao Sipi, Norway House Cree Nation in Manitoba and lives in Kenora, Ontario. She is a student of Maestro Juan Flores, a Plant Medicine Teacher of the Peruvian Amazon. Jazmin has received her Master’s degree in Biology, focussing on Boreal Forest Ethnobotany, as well, she is a graduate of Boreal Forest Archaeology and Cultural Anthropology. Jazmin has travelled across Canada to share her knowledge, as well as to the United Kingdom to present at Breaking Convention 2019. She assisted in writing Science North’s Planetarium film “Under the Same Stars: Minwaadiziwin,” including narration and singing for the piece. Jazmin shares her knowledge of Boreal forest medicines, continually working with Indigenous people of Northern Ontario. Currently, Jazmin works as a consultant with a Tribal council and a Community Organization teaching knowledge that promotes well-being, healing and self-knowing. The construction of her Healing Centre, located on Lake of the Woods, begins in 2021.

Erika Dyck


Erika Dyck is a Professor and a Canada Research Chair in the History of Health & Social Justice. She is the author or co-author of several books, including: Psychedelic Psychiatry (2008); Facing Eugenics (2013); Managing Madness (2017); and Challenging Choices (2020). Erika is the co-editor of the Canadian Bulletin for Medical History/Bulletin canadien d’histoire de la medicine and the co-editor of a book series on the global history of alcohol and drugs, called Intoxicating Histories.

Ken Tupper


Kenneth Tupper is an Adjunct Professor in the School of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia and Adjunct Professor in the School of Child & Youth Care at the University of Victoria. His doctoral research developed the concept of “entheogenic education,” a theoretical frame for understanding how psychedelic plants and substances can function as cognitive tools for learning. Kenneth’s current research interests include: psychedelic studies; the cross-cultural and historical uses of drugs; public, professional and school-based drug education; and creating healthy public policy to maximize benefits and minimize harms from psychoactive substances. He has published in numerous peer reviewed academic journals, presented at international health and drug policy conferences, and has twice been appointed to Canadian delegations to high-level United Nations international drug policy.

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Bruce Sanguin


Bruce Sanguin is a psychotherapist living on Denman Island, B.C. After 30 years as an ordained minister he took early retirement and began an intensive period of personal healing with the use of psychedelics. He is the author of seven books, the latest of which Dismantled: How Psychedelics Broke and Clergyman Apart and Put Him Back Together describes his healing journey with various medicines. Bruce is a Clinical Fellow of the Canadian Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. 


Rick Doblin


Rick Doblin, Ph.D. is the founder and executive director of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). He received his doctorate in Public Policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, where he wrote his dissertation on the regulation of the medical uses of psychedelics and marijuana and his Master’s thesis on a survey of oncologists about smoked marijuana vs. the oral THC pill in nausea control for cancer patients. Rick studied with Dr. Stanislav Grof and was among the first to be certified as a Holotropic Breathwork practitioner. He founded MAPS in 1986, and currently resides in Boston with his wife, dog, and empty rooms from three children, one of whom is in college and two have graduated.

Donate to Dr. Anne Wagner's study

We have donated to support Dr. Anne Wagner’s upcoming study, and we encourage you to do the same. Dr. Wagner is a Canadian psychologist who is currently starting world’s largest to date study aimed at future legalization of MDMA-Assisted Therapy for Relationships. Donating to support this study is the most direct way you can advance the future legalization of Enhanced Therapy for Relationships. Your donation is tax deductible and all funds go directly (via MAPS Canada) to Dr. Anne Wagner’s study.

Donating is a direct way to influence change. 

Anne Wagner

Ph.D., C.Psych.

Dr. Anne Wagner is a clinical psychologist and researcher who is committed to helping understand and improve trauma recovery. She is the founder of Remedy, a mental health innovation community. She is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Psychology and an Associate Member of the Yeates School of Graduate Studies at Ryerson University. She is the Past-Chair of the Traumatic Stress Section of the Canadian Psychological Association, and sits on the Quality Committee of Casey House (Toronto’s HIV/AIDS Hospital). Anne has presented and published extensively in the use of trauma-informed care, trauma treatment, stigma and interpersonal factors. Anne has a particular focus on innovating mental health interventions, for example by using different treatment formats (e.g., with couples), and facilitators of treatment (e.g., MDMA). Anne, alongside Dr. Michael Mithoefer, Annie Mithoefer, BSN, and Dr. Candice Monson, was one of the investigators of the MAPS funded pilot study of Cognitive Behavioral Conjoint Therapy for PTSD + MDMA. Anne is the lead investigator for the upcoming MAPS funded pilot study of Cognitive Processing Therapy for PTSD + MDMA.

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Thank you again for your interest in MDMA assisted therapy.

ETI Team

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. We set cookies with regard to email newsletter signup features, survey related cookies and forms related cookies. We also use third party cookies for web traffic analytics and for social network related functionality. Please review our cookie policy.