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Mason Marks, I. Glenn Cohen, Jonathan Perez- Reyzin et al., Microdosing Psychedelics Under Local, State, and Federal Law, 103 B.U. L. Rev. 101 (2023).

Abstract: Microdosing psychedelic substances (“microdosing”) is a growing trend that has gained significant media and scientific attention. The practice typically involves consuming low doses of psychedelics, such as psilocybin or lysergic acid diethylamide (“LSD”), two or three times per week, over the course of weeks or months. Many claim that microdosing improves attention, creativity, or mood. Some say it reduces pain as well as symptoms of anxiety, depression, and migraine or cluster headaches. Others fear it has not been proven safe or effective by randomized controlled trials. Nevertheless, the microdosing trend is growing against the backdrop of a broader psychedelic renaissance characterized by increasing interest in researching, legalizing, consuming, and commercializing psychedelics. This Article is the first to address the legal status of microdosing under local, state, and federal law. It analyzes the national trend toward psychedelic legal reform and how it affects the legal status of people who microdose. Since 2019, over a dozen U.S. cities have decriminalized psychedelics, making their possession in each city a low priority for law enforcement. The following year, during the 2020 presidential election, the psychedelic renaissance reached a turning point. Through ballot initiatives, the District of Columbia partially decriminalized psychedelics, and Oregon became both the first state to decriminalize psychedelics and the first to legalize the production, sale, and supervised adult use of psilocybin. In 2022, Colorado became the second state to partially decriminalize psychedelics and create a legal market for their supervised administration. Related legislation has been proposed in about a dozen other states, including California, New York, Massachusetts, Illinois, and New Hampshire. However, despite the growing popularity of microdosing, these jurisdictions have largely overlooked the practice and thus raised numerous equity and public health concerns. This Article analyzes available scientific evidence for microdosing, summarizes its risks and benefits, and analyzes how existing and proposed legislation affect the practice. It concludes with recommendations for the safe and equitable integration of microdosing into existing, proposed, and future psychedelics regulation. As more jurisdictions decriminalize or legalize psychedelics, they can use the Article as a resource and guide.