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Ibogaine: History, Pharmacology, Spirituality, & Clinical Data 

Ibogaine: History, Pharmacology, Spirituality, & Clinical Data
Ibogaine: History, Pharmacology, Spirituality, & Clinical Data

Benjamin Shapiro

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date: 04 August 2021

Ibogaine is an indole alkaloid derived from the African shrub Tabernathe iboga with broad anti-addictive, anti-depressant, and central nervous system stimulating effects. It is categorized as an oneriogen (or atypical hallucinogen) and has been used in West African tribal rituals for centuries. It was identified by French explorers in the early 1900s, came to the United States in the 1960s, and became marginalized in the mid-1990s after adverse outcomes halted federally funded human trials. Since then legal ibogaine treatment clinics have been established in countries without use restrictions. Ibogaine is a σ‎1 and σ‎2 receptor and μ‎ and κ‎ opioid receptor agonist and a α‎3β‎4 nicotinic and NMDA receptor antagonist. Decades of trials have demonstrated ibogaine’s potential. Human trials of ibogaine consistently demonstrate rapid remission of acute withdrawal symptoms but differ in their findings with regard to abstinence and toxicity. While ibogaine is not a “magic bullet,” considerable abstinence may result after multiple treatments, however QT prolongation can produce lethal ventricular tachyarrhythmias.18 MC is in pre-clinical investigation.

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