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Lyttle, Thomas; PSYCHEDELICA MYSTICAE: White Light Drugs and the Search for the Pineal, (1994)


Lyttle, Thomas. Drug Based Religions and Contemporary Drug Taking. JOURNAL OF DRUG ISSUES, 18(2):271-284,



Identification of 5-hydroxy-tryptamine (bufotenine) in takini (Brosimum acutifolium Huber subsp. acutifolium C.C. Berg, Moraceae), a shamanic potion used in the Guiana Plateau

Christian Morettia, Yvan Gaillardb, , Pierre Grenanda, Fabien Bévalotb and Jean-Michel Prévostoc

Unité No 84 Biodival, IRD Orleans, 5 rue du Carbone, 45000 Orléans, France bLaboratory of Analytical Toxicology, Quai Jean Jaurès, 07800 La Voulte sur Rhône, France cFédération de Biologie Clinique, Hôpital Desgenettes, 108 Boulevard Pinel, 69003 Lyon, France

Received 30 May 2005;
revised 20 November 2005;
accepted 15 December 2005.
Available online 7 February 2006.


This paper is the first thorough analysis of takini, a hallucinogen used by the shamans of several peoples in Suriname, French Guiana, and the region east of the Para in Brazil. The drug is contained in the latex of the Brosimum acutifolium tree, and until now, its psychotropic properties appeared inconsistent with the more general medicinal uses of the tree in the surrounding region.

Our chemical and botanical studies reveal that the active ingredient of takini is bufotenine; and that this compound is only contained in the subspecies Brosimum acutifolium Huber subsp. acutifolium C.C. Berg that is found in the same area of the eastern Guianas.

Keywords: Bufotenine; 5-Hydroxy-tryptamine; Takini; Shamanism; Amerindians; Hallucinogenic beverage

Article Outline

1. Introduction
2. Takini: a historical overview
3. Previous chemical studies
4. Present chemical studies
4.1. Botanical material
4.2. Analytical technique
4.2.1. Material
4.2.2. Extraction and injection
5. Results
6. Discussion
7. Conclusions

What's New with My Subject?

Drugs, Music, and Ideology: A Social Pharmacological Interpretation of the Acid House Movement

Authors: Thomas Lyttle a; Michael Montagne b
Affiliations: a PM & E Publishing Group, Boynton Beach, Florida
  b Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts
DOI: 10.3109/10826089209047341
Publication Frequency: 14 issues per year
Published in: journal Substance Use & Misuse, Volume 27, Issue 10 October 1992 , pages 1159 - 1177
Subject: Addiction & Treatment;
Formats available: PDF (English)
Previously published as: International Journal of the Addictions (0020-773X) until 01 January 1996
Article Requests: Order Reprints : Request Permissions


During the summer of 1988, a musical concert experience called Acid House arrived on the cultural scene in many British cities. The media created a frenzy of misinformation in reporting about the latest drug craze. Acid House music was then banned from the pop music charts, radio and television, and retail outlets. Some psychoactive substances have been bought, sold, and consumed at Acid House events, but drug use does not appear to be extensive. At the physiological level, the nature of Acid House music, especially the drumming aspect, seems instrumental in providing altered states of consciousness. At the interpersonal and social level, the set and setting of Acid House events further enhances and reinforces the specific physiological and psychological responses. The degree of acceptance by various subcultural groups may depend greatly on the amount of media and societal exposure given to it, particularly if authoritarian attempts to suppress it enhance its political or ideological aspects.

Keywords: Music; Acid House; Media; Altered states