Psychoplastogens- Ketamine and a New Class of Substances

June 16, 2021 by Steve Suntala

What is a Psychoplastogen?

In a recently published scientific article the team around Olsen et. al coined the term “psychoplastogens”. These are substances with the capacity to promote structural and functional plasticity in the prefrontal cortex area of the brain. Ketamine, as well the serotonergic psychedelics, are considered to be prime examples. Research has shown that they facilitate neuritogenesis in vivo (observed processes in living organisms) and in vitro (conducted with nerve cells outside of living organisms).(

How Can Psychoplastogens Like Ketamine Help with Mental Health?

Olsen et al. argue that one of the major reasons for depression and related psychological illnesses is the atrophy of neurons in the prefrontal cortex caused and aggravated by stress. This atrophy could be counteracted by the utilization of compounds that grow and repair neurons. Instead of the slow degradation of neural circuits from the crippling grip of depression, PTSD or anxiety, Ketamine offers healing and renewal. Up to this day the scientific community has not come to a clear agreement why substances like ketamine (DOI: 10.1111/nyas.12646) or psilocybin  are so successful in the treatment of depression. Ketamine especially is fast-acting and provides a long antidepressive effect. This efficacy could be explained by the fact that it triggers the formation and regeneration of damaged synaptic connections in the prefrontal cortex.

Ketamine is a Proven Psychoplastogen!

Olsen showcased in a different published paper called “Psychoplastogens: A Promising Class of Plasticity-Promoting Neurotherapeutics” the effect of ketamine. With the help of a fluorescence microscope, cortical neurons treated with ketamine were pictured and compared with vehicle-treated neurons (a non-effective compound). Displaying that ketamine significantly increased the dendritic branching. Continuing scientific research is focused on these fascinating findings and only future experiments will show what the potential of these incredible compounds is. We are excited to build upon this established knowledge and to provide Ketamine for your own healing and regrowth.


At New Pathways Clinic our heartfelt mission is to establish a holistic mental wellness campus that touches the lives of individuals in the greater Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati regions. We are dedicated to combining state-of-the-art mental health treatments, like Ketamine therapy infusions and Spravato nasal spray, with the expertise of compassionate mental health professionals to treat depression, anxiety, PTSD, migraines, and bipolar disorder.

Our unwavering commitment drives us to continuously evolve and adapt as the scientific landscape of ketamine research expands and diversifies, leading to innovative mental health treatments. We are determined to pave the way for a healthier future for Cleveland, central Ohio, and southern Ohio.

New Pathways Clinic also offers Semaglutide & Tirzepatide weight-loss shots, ketamine-assisted psychotherapy, and  ketamine/Spravato support groups for patients.

Keep In Touch

Stay informed on ketamine treatments, Spravato, and mental-health wellness at New Pathways Clinic in Cleveland via our free newsletter.

© New Pathways 2024