Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Top 5 recreational drug chemists

1) Raphael Mechoulam
The guru of cannabinoid research. Identified delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol as active ingredient of Cannabis Sativa in 1964. Did extensive research (and still does) on the endocannabinoid system, and the therapeutic exploration of the cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 (there is a CB3 too, GPR55).


2) Albert Hofmann
The very old and famous LSD man.

3) Charles Romley Alder Wright
Lecturer on chemistry in St. Mary’s hospital Medical School in London, synthesized heroin in 1874. He tried to find a non-addictive alternative to morphine

Unaware of Wright's work Felix Hoffman synthesized it as well for Bayer in 1897. Hoffman synthesized vitamin C at the same time and Bayer marketed them both leading to a nice and famous ad.


4) Anton Köllisch
Synthesized MDMA in 1912 for Merck (Germany). A patent that included the substance was filed the same year (DE274350). MDMA is mentioned as a chemical formula. The tale that MDMA was developed as an appetite suppressor for soldiers but appeared to have side effects is incorrect as was shown by a study of Merck's archives. MDMA was an intermediate in the synthesis for clotting agents. Anton Köllisch died as a soldier in 1916.

5) Nagai Nagayoshi
Discovered ephedrine and synthesized methamphetamine from it in 1893. (Thought it would be nice to have a Japanese guy in the list.)

7 comments:

Russ said...

I am stunned that this list could even exist, and make no mention of Alexander Shulgin, who synthesiszed over 230 different phenylethylamines (i.e. amphetamines) and tryptamines (e.g. serotonin analogues) and tested many of them on himself! He published his work in journals like Nature and J. Med. Chem. and then went on to write two books: Phenylethylamines I Have known and Loved and Tryptamines I Have Known and Loved, commonly known as PiHKAL and TiHKAL. I read most of PiHKAL many years ago, it is a fascinating read for chemistry (and/or recreational drug) enthusiasts.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Shulgin

Ψ*Ψ said...

I would have placed Hofmann first, but OK...

Kutti said...

Hofmann is great! Have you read his book "LSD - mein Sorgenkind" respectively "LSD: My Problem Child"? It´s definitely a very nice book.

een of andere vent said...

Yeah I did like LSD, my problem child as well.The text is online

http://www.psychedelic-library.org/child.htm

I like PiHKAL as well, I still have to read TiHKAL.

Kutti said...

Ah thx for that hint. I will go and buy PiHKAL, sounds interesting..

dannyglix said...

Shulgin is without question missing from this list, but in any case, its a lovley list :)

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