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One of a class of indole alkaloids structurally similar to the amino acid L-tryptophan, when ingested, maycause hallucinations.
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The combination of MAO inhibitors such as some ayahuasca j carbolines with monoaminergic and serotoninergic substances in general, antidepressives, as well as ginseng, St John's wort, dextromethorphan, amphetamine, and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA: "ecstasy"), could produce the serotonin syndrome (dos Santos 2013a; Pilgrim et al.
Acetaldehyde also may condense with serotonin to form compounds called tetrahydro-beta carbolines that may be active in the brain as well.
Of chief importance is the pan Amazonian hallucinogenic brew Ayahuasca, which is a preparation containing Beta carboline alkaloids (viz.Harmine, Harmaline and tetrahydroharmine, which act as MAOIs) contained in the vine Banisteriopsis caapi , which is boiled with the leafs of DMT containing plants, commonly used are Psychotria viridis, P.
Inhibition of human cytochrome P450 enzymes 3A4 and 2D6 by p carboline alkaloids, harmine derivatives.