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Biography

James Rucker qualified in medicine at University College London in 2003. He joined King’s College London as a junior psychiatric trainee in 2005. After attaining membership of the Royal College of Psychiatrists in 2007 he was awarded a research training fellowship by the Wellcome Trust, completing a PhD in psychiatric genetics in 2012 under emeritus Professor Peter McGuffin. He completed his higher psychiatric training in general adult and old age psychiatry at Springfield and St George’s Hospital between 2014 and 2018 before being awarded an NIHR Clinician Scientist Fellowship in 2017 to investigate the safety and efficacy of the active component of magic mushrooms (psilocybin) in a randomised, placebo controlled clinical trial at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College London. Here, he leads the Psychedelic Trials Group at the Centre for Affective Disorders with Professor Allan Young. His clinical and academic expertise is in mood disorders across the adult lifespan, novel psychopharmacological approaches in resistant forms of depression and related conditions, clinical trials in drug assisted forms of psychotherapy and the use of MDMA, ketamine and cannabinoids to treat mental health conditions. He is an honorary consultant psychiatrist at the National and Specialist Tertiary Referrals Affective Disorders Service at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.  

Research Interests

  • Mood disorders across the lifespan 
  • Novel psychopharmacological approaches to treatment resistant forms of mood disorders and related conditions 
  • Clinical trials combining psychotherapy with psychedelics, MDMA, cannabinoids and ketamine related compounds. 

 

Research Groups 

The Psychedelic Trials Group 

Expertise and Public Engagement

https://time.com/3896387/lsd-psychedelic-drugs/ 

https://www.ft.com/content/e7ce4392-ad18-11e8-94bd-cba20d67390c 

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/long_reads/psychedelic-drugs-new-class-antidepressant-albert-hofmann-lsd-a8437201.html 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-44575139 

https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/bmjk48/a-psychiatrist-is-calling-for-psychedelic-drugs-to-be-reclassified 

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/health/11630785/Magic-mushrooms-should-be-used-to-treat-mental-health-problems-psychiatrist-says.html 

https://www.vox.com/2016/6/27/11544250/psychedelic-drugs-lsd-psilocybin-effects 

https://museumofthemind.org.uk/whats-on/events/can-psychedelics-ever-be-a-medicine-again 

Description

MSc Psychiatric Research – Hallucinogens and related compounds