Erowid References Database
“Psychopharmacologic Activity: Quantum Chemical Study.”.
Psychopharmacol Bull. 1975;11(2):44-45.
Structure/activity relations of psychotropic drugs were studied in rats. Methods The physical properties of drugs were determined by a combination of mathematical analysis (based on quantum mechanics) and physicochemical measurement. Analyses of drug action were made in isolated enzyme systems, isolated tissue and intact animals. Results The hallucinogenic potency of a series of N,N-dimethyltryptamines correlated with the energy of the highest occupied molecular orbital. Correlation for amphetamines and LSD was the same. The potency of the tryptamines in depressing the lateral geniculate nucleus, thought to be related to hallucinogenic activity, also correlated with the energy of the highest occupied molecular orbital. Preliminary calculations on tetrabydrocannabinols suggested similar electronic links with their hallucinogenic activity. Apparently dissimilar hallucinogens-LSD, indolealkylamines and methoxylated amphetamines - showed certain similarities when their molecular orbital characteristics and chemical structures were examined. The study suggested that 2-amino-1,2,3,4-tetrahydro - naphthalenes containing electron donating groups, such as methoxy groups, on the aromatic ring would be hallucinogenic. These compounds appeared to be at least as potent as mescaline and the methoxylated amphetamines. The effects of mescaline and delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol were enhanced by high doses of nicotinamide. In recent in vitro studies, synaptosomal membranes underwent a structural change at room temperature, marked by an increase of the optical density of UV absorption and a decrease of fluorescence intensity. Incubation of the membranes with phospholipases C and D further increased the change in absorption; incubation with phospholipase A reduced this change. Morphine inhibited the structural transition and Ca and Mg++ also showed slight inhibitory effects. The action of morphine and phospholipases C and D, indicated that the separation of the chromophores from the nonpolar portion of the membrane was the rate-limiting step. Attempts to correlate membrane effects with pharmacological actions of the narcotic gave negative results.
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