The Pineapple Fund, an anonymous benefactor’s initiative to give away $86 million in digital currency, plans to donate $4 million for the study of MDMA, commonly known as ecstasy, as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has designated MDMA as a “breakthrough therapy” for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder, a significant milestone in the decades-long effort to turn the notorious illegal party drug — better known as ecstasy or “Molly” — into a prescription medication, Washington Post reports.
Back in the 1990s, before he began studying the medicinal effects of MDMA on patients suffering from severe post-traumatic stress disorder, psychiatrist Dr. Michael Mithoefer would occasionally encounter patients who had experimented with the drug. They had, of course, taken MDMA for the same reason everyone takes MDMA — to experience the face-melting, dance-inducing effects of an illegal substance that is engineered to make you feel really, really good. For Mithoefer’s patients, however, the experience was a little more complicated.