Research into magic mushrooms began years ago but has been hampered by the status of psilocybin, which changed to illegal (a Schedule I substance, under the Controlled Substances Act), half a century ago. There was a time when researchers who attempted to continue their studies risked their careers and freedom.
Psilocybin is still illegal (it cannot be cultivated, sold or possessed), but has largely been decriminalized, especially since its potential medical use was discovered and emphasized by more recent studies. However, the existent information, at the moment, is not enough; research on psilocybin needs to continue in order to formulate medical conclusions that can be the basis of revolutionary treatments.
This is currently possible using psychedelic mushroom spores available for research. Spores are generally used as a means of preserving genetics rather than as the primary means of producing fungi. Besides, they are in a rather grey area of the law, because they do not contain psilocybin, at their stage of development, so technically they are legal. Psilocybin appears only later, as spores germinate.
In short, spores represent fresh genetics for researchers in the lab, and can be used for studying the growth of magic mushrooms. They can be stored as spore prints, spore syringes, or spore swabs, and used in the long run for microscopy.