PHARMACOLOGY OF AYAHUASCA
Chacrona (Psicotria Viridis):
The substance N-Dimethyltryptamine (DMT) is present in the leaves of Chacrona (Psychotria Viridis). Tea made from the leaves, and indeed the leaves themselves, are not psycho-active when ingested on their own owing to the rapid destruction of the alkaloids by Monoamine Oxydase (MAO), an enzyme naturally present in the human organism. The structure of DMT, like that of other psychedelic compounds, is very similar to that of serotonin (5-Hydroxitriptamine or 5-HT) an important modulating neurotransmitter. Serotonin acts naturally, modulating controls and regulating processes in the brain. It is assumed that the increase both in serotonin levels (the effect of Mariri) and in those of DMT, affects the serotonergic neurones, provoking hyper-stimulation and modulation, which sets off a chain reaction of effects, including the liberation of suppressed emotions, renewed memory of long-forgotten events, and new images.