What is Ibogaine?

Ibogaine is a naturally occurring psychoactive substance that has been demonstrated to interrupt substance use disorders, as well as possess other neurological and psychological benefits. It is found naturally in a number of plant sources, principally in a member of the Apocynaceae family known as iboga (usually Tabernanthe iboga), which has been used for centuries by traditional communities in West Africa for ritual and healing purposes.

In lower doses, ibogaine acts as a stimulant, increasing energy and decreasing fatigue in a way that is distinct from other central nervous system stimulants like amphetamines and cocaine. In larger doses, ibogaine produces oneirogenic effects, meaning that it stimulates a dream-like state while awake, as well as closed eye imagery and the retrieval of repressed memories.


Its physical effects can include ataxia, nausea and vomiting, sensitivity to light and sound, tremors, and cardiac effects. In the early 1960’s, the Chilean psychologist Claudio Naranjo conducted 40 ibogaine sessions with his clients and was the first to scientifically describe the experience. He reported that ibogaine helped people to view difficult experiences in an objective way, and that it helped to facilitate closure of unresolved emotional conflicts.


The occidental use of ibogaine, especially its application in the treatment of substance use disorders, was pioneered by Howard Lotsof. In 1962, 19 year old Lotsof serendipitously found that a single dose of ibogaine not only interrupted his physiological dependence on heroin, it also took away his craving to use, all with no withdrawal symptoms. Lotsof spent the rest of his life advocating for the development of ibogaine as a prescription medicine


Ibogaine alkaloids

Iboga alkaloids are a particular class of indolomonoterpenes most often characterized by an isoquinuclidine nucleus. Their first occurrence was detected in the roots of Tabernanthe iboga, a sacred plant to the people of Gabon, which made it cult object. Ibogaine is the main representative of this class of alkaloids and its psychoactive properties are well documented. It has been proposed as a drug cessation treatment and has a wide range of activities in targeting opioids, cocaine, and alcohol addiction.

The alkaloids of Ibogaine are usually refered to as Ibogaine TA  Iboga alkaloids are alkaloid constituents of Tabernanthe iboga. Iboga alkaloids include ibogaine, tabernanthine, coronaridine, voacangine, ibogamine, and harmaline, among others. Noribogaine is a major active metabolite of ibogaine, and 18-methoxycoronaridine is a synthetic derivative of coronaridine.

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