Newswise — New York, NY (July 23, 2021) – The Center for Psychedelic Psychotherapy and Trauma Research in the Department of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai today announced a $2.1 million charitable contribution by the  Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation. The gift will be used to help fund a large study comparing two and three sessions of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in combat veterans diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The study is being sponsored by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS).

“Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy represents an entirely new treatment approach for veterans with trauma-related conditions like PTSD and depression,” said Alexandra M. Cohen, President of the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation. “We are excited to support this innovative work and look forward to seeing the potential impact of this study on veterans and their families.”

PTSD and trauma are highly prevalent in our society. More than 70 percent of Americans will experience a major traumatic event in their lifetime. More than 8 million adults are diagnosed with PTSD each year in the United States, and seven to eight out of every 100 Americans will experience PTSD at some point during their lives. PTSD is a particularly significant problem for combat veterans.  Many patients remain with significant PTSD symptoms even after a course of therapy. A recent phase 3 clinical trial sponsored by MAPS demonstrated significant benefits for MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in reducing PTSD symptom severity and promoting sustained wellness. 

“The Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation has been at the forefront of philanthropic giving for the benefit of our combat veterans. This generous gift will allow us to dedicate our efforts to studying the effect of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in combat veterans with PTSD,” says Rachel Yehuda, PhD, Director of Mount Sinai’s Center for Psychedelic Psychotherapy and Trauma Research. “We are extremely grateful for their support of our mission to revolutionize the treatment of trauma survivors with psychedelic psychotherapy and better understand the mechanisms of resilience and recovery from trauma.”

Under the direction of Dr. Yehuda, The Center for Psychedelic Psychotherapy and Trauma Research in the Department of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai examines the therapeutic potential of psychedelic compounds such as MDMA and psilocybin for post-traumatic stress disorder and other trauma-related symptoms. 

About the Mount Sinai Health System
The Mount Sinai Health System is New York City's largest academic medical system, encompassing eight hospitals, a leading medical school, and a vast network of ambulatory practices throughout the greater New York region. Mount Sinai is a national and international source of unrivaled education, translational research and discovery, and collaborative clinical leadership ensuring that we deliver the highest quality care—from prevention to treatment of the most serious and complex human diseases. The Health System includes more than 7,200 physicians and features a robust and continually expanding network of multispecialty services, including more than 400 ambulatory practice locations throughout the five boroughs of New York City, Westchester, and Long Island. The Mount Sinai Hospital is ranked No. 14 on U.S. News & World Report's "Honor Roll" of the Top 20 Best Hospitals in the country and the Icahn School of Medicine as one of the Top 20 Best Medical Schools in country. Mount Sinai Health System hospitals are consistently ranked regionally by specialty and our physicians in the top 1% of all physicians nationally by U.S. News & World Report.

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About the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation
The Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation is committed to inspiring philanthropy and community service by creating awareness, offering guidance, and leading by example to show the world what giving can do. Since launching the Foundation in 2001, Steven and Alexandra Cohen have generously funded local and national nonprofit organizations that uplift the communities in which they serve. The Cohens' giving reflects their personal connection with the causes that inspire them. To learn more, please visit or follow @CohenGive on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram