Definition :

Dimethyltryptamine( DMT)— or N, N-dimethyltryptamine in medical talk — is a hallucinogenic tryptamine drug. Sometimes referred to as Dimitri, this drug produces effects similar to those of psychedelics, like LSD and magic mushrooms.


Other names for it include:


– businessman’s trip

– businessman’s special

– 45-minute psychosis

– spiritual molecule


Molecular Formula:  C12H16N2







Molecular Weight:            188.27 g/mol


Molecular structure:  <<< IMAGE >>>>

Physical form :

DMT naturally occurs in many plant species, which have been used in religious ceremonies in some South American countries for centuries. It can also be made in a laboratory.

Synthetic DMT usually comes in the form of a white, crystalline powder.


Etymology :

In terms of Western culture, DMT was first synthesized by a Canadian chemist, Richard Manske, in 1931 (Manske, 1931) but was, at the time, not assessed for human pharmacological effects. In 1946 the microbiologist Oswaldo Gonçalves de Lima discovered DMT’s natural occurrence in plants (Goncalves de Lima, 1946). DMT’s hallucinogenic properties were not discovered until 1956 when Stephen Szara, a pioneering Hungarian chemist and psychiatrist, extracted DMT from the Mimosa hostilis plant and administered the extract to himself intramuscularly (Szára, 1956). This sequence of events formed the link between modern science and the historical use of many DMT-containing plants as a cultural and religious ritual sacrament (McKenna et al., 1998), their effect on the psyche and the chemical structure of N, N-dimethyltryptamine.

The discovery of a number of hallucinogens in the 1950’s and observations of their effects on perception, affect and behavior prompted hypotheses that the syndrome known as schizophrenia might be caused by an error in metabolism that produced such hallucinogens in the human brain, forming a schizo- or psycho-toxin (Osmond and Smythies, 1952). The presence of endogenous hallucinogenic compounds, related mainly to those resembling dopamine (mescaline) or serotonin (DMT), were subsequently sought. Although several interesting new compounds were found, the only known hallucinogens isolated were those derived from tryptophan (DMT, and 5-methoxy-DMT). Data were subsequently developed illustrating pathways for their endogenous synthesis in mammalian species, including humans. Over 60 studies were eventually undertaken in an attempt to correlate the presence or concentration of these compounds in blood and/or urine with a particular psychiatric diagnosis (for a review see Barker et al., 2012). However, there has yet to be any clear-cut or repeatable correlation of the presence or level of DMT in peripheral body fluids with any psychiatric diagnosis. Nonetheless, the discovery of endogenous hallucinogens and the possibilities rendered in various hypotheses surrounding their role and function in mental illness, normal and “extraordinary” brain function spurred further research into the mechanisms for their biosynthesis, metabolism and mode of action as well as for their known and profound effects on consciousness (Mishor et al., 2011; Araújo et al., 2015).


Uses of Dimethyltryptamine( DMT):

Mode of use:

Synthetic DMT usually comes in the form of a white, crystalline powder. It can be smoked in a pipe, vaporized, injected, or snorted.

When used in religious ceremonies, plants and vines are boiled to create a tea-like drink of varying strengths.

How long does it take to work?

Synthetic DMT kicks in pretty fast, producing effects within 5 to 10 minutes.

Plant-based brews tend to produce effects within 20 to 60 minutes.


Inhalation (most common route of administration)

Light: 10 – 20 mg

Common: 20 – 40 mg

Strong: 40 – 60 mg


Common: 30 – 60 mg

DMT is typically inactive orally. This changes when it is combined with an MAOI. An example of this combination is ayahuasca, which contains Banisteriopsis caapi (MAOIs) and Psychotria viridis (DMT).

An analysis of 16 ayahuasca preparations found the following concentrations per 100 mL:

– Beta-carboline (MAOI) average: 158 mg ” Range: 20 – 401 mg

– DMT average: 29 mg ” Range: 25 – 36 m



Overdoses are caused by a person taking too much of a drug, to the point that it is toxic. Since it is only used recreationally, there is not a specified DMT dosage. When determining how much DMT to take, people will adjust based on the route of administration they are using. As stated, DMT taken orally will not have an effect since it is broken down quickly. To be taken orally, it needs to be mixed with a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI), which will inhibit its rapid degradation. To get around this, DMT is sometimes smoked or injected. When taken this way, it can have rapid effects (within seconds to minutes) and only lasts for 15–60 minutes.

When taken with a MOAI the effects take longer to kick in (up to 60 minutes) but last for up to four hours.

With other types of drugs, this inconsistency in dosing could lead to an overdose, where the person takes too much and it has detrimental health effects. However, DMT is generally well tolerated, with only a few reports of it having acute cardiovascular effects. So far research on DMT has not found any long-term health risks associated with DMT use. Most literature on DMT agrees that there is not enough evidence to suggest that it is toxic, even in high amounts.

DMT Overdose Symptoms:

Though DMT is generally well tolerated, there are side effects that can occur from using the drug. When taken with other substances to inhibit its rapid degradation, such as an MAOI, it may be difficult to determine if the side effects are from DMT or the other substance.

DMT Overdose Treatment :

Since DMT use is not generally considered toxic, there is not a standard treatment for a DMT overdose treatment, as there are for other types of illicit drugs. The effects of the DMT drug are primarily psychological and a person may need to get help after experiencing a bad DMT trip. Most overdoses occur as a result of developing tolerance to a drug, causing the person to take more and more of the drug until it becomes toxic to them. DMT does not cause tolerance and therefore people generally do not have to change or increase the dosage to get the same effect, making the risk of overdosing low.

Most people who take DMT will not become physically dependent on it, but it can occur with other drugs, however, it is possible to become addicted to the psychedelic effects that it has. If a person is using DMT continually for these effects, to the point where it is interfering with their everyday life, they may need DMT addiction treatment.

Side effects of Dimethyltryptamine ( DMT):



– High blood pressure

– Faster than normal heart rate

– Pupil dilation

– Becoming agitated

An overdose occurs when someone takes too much of a drug and it essentially shuts down the body’s normal functions. This occurs at different doses with different types of drugs, depending on how potent the drug is affecting these normal bodily functions. DMT doesn’t often cause this type of reaction since the chemical doesn’t appear to affect normal bodily functions as much as some other hallucinogens. Instead, overdosing on DMT can lead to psychological effects, when the person has a negative experience with the hallucinations. This is sometimes referred to as a bad DMT trip. However, while it is not common, DMT drug overdose has been fatal in very rare cases.

Dimethyltryptamine( DMT) Interactions:

DMT can interact with a range of other prescription and over-the-counter medications, as well as other drugs.

If you’re using Dimethyltryptamine( DMT) , avoid mixing it with:

– alcohol- antihistamines

– muscle relaxants

– opioids


– amphetamines

– LSD, aka acid

– mushrooms

– ketamine

– gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB), aka liquid V and liquid G

– cocaine

– cannabis

DMT Detection in Blood, Urine, and Cerebrospinal Fluid

Barker et al. (2012) have published a thorough overview of the 69 published studies examining blood, urine and cerebrospinal fluid detection of endogenous N, N-dimethylated tryptamines [N, N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT), 5-hydroxy-DMT (bufotenine, HDMT), and 5-methoxy-DMT (MDMT)]. Nearly all of the studies were directed at establishing a relationship between the presence and/or level of these compounds and a psychiatric diagnosis. In total, the 69 studies examined DMT in thousands of subjects. A critical review of these data determined, however, that most early studies reporting rather high concentrations of these compounds in blood and/or urine were most likely in error and any correlations based on these data were likewise probably incorrect. The reasons for this conclusion were: (1) Based on current analytical requirements for unequivocal structure identification, it is highly probable that many of these studies misidentified the target analyte. (2) If properly identified, the studies showed that a psychiatric diagnosis was not a necessary or sufficient criterion for finding one or more of these hallucinogens in various body fluids; “normal” controls were also positive (and sometimes higher) for these compounds. Nevertheless, it was also concluded that, particularly where mass spectral evidence was provided, DMT and HDMT are endogenous and can often be successfully measured in human body fluids. The evidence was less compelling for MDMT where the only two MS-based positive studies—in CSF—were performed by the same research group. There was no mass spectral data demonstrating detection of MDMT in blood or urine. There was also no study that attempted a determination of HDMT in CSF.

In conducting studies to determine the natural occurrence of a compound as being endogenous, it is also necessary to eliminate other possible dietary or environmental sources. Of the 69 studies reviewed, many addressed the possible source of DMT as being from diet or gut bacteria (Barker et al., 2012) by using special diets. Of those conducted, it was determined that neither was a source but additional research in this area using more modern technology and a more standard diet across studies is a necessity. There have also been only a few efforts to examine the many variables that may influence the levels of these compounds, such as circadian or diurnal variations, sleep stages and gender-age-related differences. Indeed, most of the studies collected only a single time point or were from 24 h collections (urine). Such infrequent sampling makes it impossible to assess central DMT production from peripheral measurements and suggests, perhaps incorrectly, that DMT only appears intermittently or not at all. In trying to compare the results, interpretations and correlation of the data were hampered by variability in sampling methods, amount of sample assayed, type of sample (plasma, serum and/or whole blood), divergent techniques and analytical methodology that also had highly variable or unspecified limits of detection.


1-Potential Benefits:

Dimethyltryptamine( DMT) is actually found in the human brain, so our bodies are accustomed to handling this molecule. In fact, research suggests that DMT has an important role in various processes taking place in the central and peripheral nervous systems. DMT trips are so short-lived because our bodies are so good at metabolizing it. All of this makes DMT is a fairly safe compound to ingest—and helps us understand the potential benefits of a DMT trip.

For centuries, indigenous people have used DMT for healing and change, and, more recently, science is backing this up. Johns Hopkins researchers recently conducted a survey into the anti-depressant qualities of 5-MeO-DMT and found that use of the compound resulted in huge improvements in well-being—among 362 adults, around 80% of respondents reported improvements in anxiety and depression. Another study, conducted with rats, found that microdosing DMT also led to positive improvements with anxiety and depression.

All of this could have something to do with DMT’s propensity to creating god- or spirit-like hallucinations. After all, there’s a reason Rick Strassman called DMT “the spirit molecule”—and a reason the name has stuck. With many psychedelics, studies show that the more a person experiences certain “mystical” qualities during a trip, the more healing they receive, it’s believed that DMT’s ability to make users “see God” could be the key to its healing powers.

However, very little systematic research exists on DMT and spiritual experiences. This has caused some to question the direction of the relationship between psychedelic use and spirituality. Does DMT aid in spiritual growth, or do people who are inclined to seek spiritual growth end up taking DMT?

From what we can tell, it’s probably a bit of both.


However therapeutic Dimethyltryptamine( DMT) may be, it is still a highly potent psychedelic that does cause a range of psychological and physiological changes.

The most common physiological side-effects include elevated blood pressure and heart rate, dizziness, lack of coordination, nausea (if DMT is taken as part of ayahuasca), shivering, and potential loss of consciousness. This means that anyone with a heart condition should take high precautions if smoking DMT. Other risks involved here concern the logistics of ingestion: DMT is best enjoyed in a comfortable environment where there is little risk of injury.

As for the psychological effects, Dimethyltryptamine( DMT) can cause intense open-eyed hallucinations, which can completely alter one’s perception of the environment. This can result in heavy confusion, which may escalate into anxiety or panic. The closed-eyed visualizations can also be overwhelming and may cause a feeling of discomfort, fear or, at the extreme, psychological trauma. In some users, DMT induces a feeling of separation between the mind/soul and the body. Losing this connection can catalyze an incredibly powerful and profound shift in consciousness, but it can also produce symptoms of depersonalization.

Lastly, the cases where it really might be potentially harmful is when there is interaction with other drugs or substances. Refer to the Pharmacology section of this guide for more information on what to avoid.

To ensure your safety, it’s to always have a sober sitter present. We can’t stress the importance of this enough.

Future Research on the Metabolism of DMT

While the metabolism of Dimethyltryptamine( DMT) has been thoroughly studied and a number of metabolites, both major and minor, have been identified (Figure 2), one of the complications in understanding the role and function of endogenous DMT has been the fact that, to date, no study examining body fluids (blood, urine, saliva) has ever been conducted to correlate such data with human physiological events, such as circadian changes, sex differences, etc. (Sitaram and McLeod, 1990; Barker et al., 2012). Of greater impact is the fact that, despite DMT’s rapid metabolism and multiple metabolites, no study has fully assessed all of these compounds simultaneously to better understand DMT’s overall occurrence or rate of endogenous synthesis, release, clearance and/or the overall assessment of the relevance of endogenous levels in the brain or periphery. All of these factors need to be examined. Given that peripherally administered DMT, at what must be considered as much higher doses than would be expected to occur naturally in the entire organism, is rapidly metabolized and cleared, measuring endogenous DMT alone in an attempt to assess its role and function is probably doomed to failure. This is particularly true if endogenous DMT is mainly produced, stored and metabolized in discreet brain areas and that DMT and its metabolites so produced never attain measurable levels in peripheral fluids. To the degree that DMT is produced peripherally, measurement of IAA, DMT-NO, N-methyltryptamine and the precursor for the synthesis of both DMT and NMT, tryptamine, would be advantageous. These compounds have been variously reported in tissue, blood and urine samples. However, this approach is complicated by the fact that the major MAO metabolite of all three of these latter compounds, IAA (Figure 2), is also derived from dietary sources and is produced from the action of bacteria in the gut. It is not unreasonable to question whether measurement of DMT and its metabolites, and thus the role and function of endogenous DMT, can be understood by simply trying to measure these compounds in the periphery. This is particularly true in understanding DMT production in the CNS. Peripheral measurements may not be the way to determine the central role of DMT and DMT produced in the brain may never be available for measurement in the periphery. Nonetheless, additional studies should determine if there is validity in such measurements and examine possible circadian, ultradian or diurnal variations in DMT synthesis as well as the changes that may occur due to alterations in other physiological parameter

Dimethyltryptamine( DMT) expert opinion :

John Horgan, a former Scientific American staff writer, directs the Center for Science Writings at Stevens Institute of Technology.

You know that psychedelics are making a comeback when the New York Times says so on page 1. In “Hallucinogens Have Doctors Tuning In,” John Tierney reports on how doctors at schools like Harvard, Johns Hopkins, UCLA and NYU are testing the potential of psilocybin and other hallucinogens for treating depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, alcoholism—and for inducing spiritual experiences.

Tierney’s brisk overview neglects to mention the most mind-bending of all psychedelics: dimethyltryptamine, or DMT. It was first synthesized by a British chemist in the 1930s, and its psychotropic properties were discovered some 20 years later by the Hungarian-born chemist Stephen Szara, who later became a researcher for the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Why is Dimethyltryptamine( DMT) so fascinating? For starters, DMT is the only psychedelic known to occur naturally in the human body. In 1972, the Nobel laureate Julius Axelrod of the National Institutes of Health discovered DMT in human brain tissue, leading to speculation that the compound plays a role in psychosis. Research into that possibility—and into psychedelics in general–was abandoned because of the growing backlash against these compounds.

In 1990, however, Rick Strassman, a psychiatrist at the University of New Mexico, obtained permission from federal authorities to inject DMT into human volunteers. Strassman, a Buddhist, suspected that endogenous DMT might contribute to mystical experiences. From 1990 to 1995, he supervised more than 400 DMT sessions involving 60 subjects at the University of New Mexico. Many subjects reported that they dissolved blissfully into a radiant light or sensed the presence of a powerful, god-like being.

On the other hand, 25 subjects underwent what Strassman called “adverse effects,” including terrifying hallucinations of “aliens” that took the shape of robots, insects or reptiles. Some subjects remained convinced that these aliens were real in spite of Strassman’s efforts to convince them otherwise. In part out of concern about these adverse effects, Strassman discontinued his research, which he describes in his 2000 book DMT: The Spirit Molecule.

DMT is also the primary active ingredient of ayahuasca, a tea that Amazonian tribes brew from two plants and drink as a sacred medicine. After hearing about ayahuasca from the legendary Harvard botanist Richard Shultes, the beat writer William Burroughs traveled to South America and swilled the stuff in 1953. In a letter to the poet Allen Ginsberg, Burroughs said that during his first ayahuasca trip he thought he had been poisoned, and he felt himself turning into half-man-half-woman. Burroughs nonetheless drank the tea again and praised its ability to facilitate “space time travel.”

By the mid-20th century, ayahuasca had also been adopted as a sacrament by several urban sects in Brazil. The largest of these is the Uniao Do Vegetal, which combines elements of Christianity with indigenous Indian beliefs. Researchers led by the UCLA psychiatrist Charles Grob (who is mentioned in Tierney’s story) have reported that Brazilian UDV members are on average healthier physiologically and psychologically than a control group. UDV members also claimed that ayahuasca had helped them overcome alcoholism, drug addiction and other self-destructive behaviors. A decade ago, a branch of the UDV based in New Mexico sued for the right to consume ayahuasca legally in the U.S. In 2006 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of the group.

In Antipodes of the Mind, the Israeli psychologist Benny Shanon, who has consumed ayahuasca more than 100 times, provides a gripping account of his own and others’ visions. Shanon says the tea transformed him from a “devout atheist” into a spiritual believer awestruck by the mysteries of nature and the human mind. Yet Shanon, like Strassman, acknowledges that these hallucinogenic experiences pose risks. Quoting one ayahuasca shaman, Shanon warns that ayahuasca can also be “the worst of liars,” leaving some users gripped by delusions.

I drank ayahuasca a decade ago while researching my book Rational Mysticism . It tastes like stale beer dregs flavored with cigarette butts. After I threw up, I had a cosmic panic attack, in which I was menaced by malevolent, dayglo-hued polyhedra. I have no desire to repeat this experience.

I applaud the psychedelic renaissance, with this caveat: Spiritual texts often emphasize the dangers of mystical experiences, whether generated by drugs, fasting, meditation or other means. That is the theme of an old Talmudic tale in which four rabbis are brought into the presence of God. One becomes a heretic, one goes crazy, one drops dead and one returns home with his faith affirmed.

Categories: STIMULANT


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