Jump to content


Recommended Posts

I remember that in the past there have been some discussions about this psychedelic compound. Since I'm in the process of reading one of the main treaties of psychopharmacology (Stahl's essential psychopharmacology, 2021 5th edition) it has been interesting to come across this substance and to read about the mechanisms of action.

Psilocybin is rapidly metabolized to psilocin, so they are both present after ingestion. Their hallucinogenic effect is mainly linked to agonism at the 5HT2A receptor, one of the main serotonin receptors.

Agonism means that the psilocybin/psilocin molecule binds to the 5HT2A receptors, mimicking a powerful surge of natural serotonin, causing n amplified electric signal at some neural circuits. The anti-depressive drugs like the SSRIs also cause a greater flow of serotonin (by inhibiting its reuptake), so it is no wonder that psilocybin is being studied, as a breakthrough drug, as an antidepressant, anxiolytic and against PTSD.






The mechanism of action of psilocybin, causing psychosis, hallucinations, and other experiences have been described as follows. It is all related to the strong stimulation of 5HT2A receptors in glutamatergic neurons in some areas of the brain. Please note that auditory hallucinations are more typical of schizophrenia and 


The serotoninergic hypothesis constitutes one of the hypotheses of psychosis; in the context of psilocybin most probably governs the amplified glutamate release in the visual cortex, which apparently is the root cause of all the visions occuring to the users of such substance.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

I just watched the 4 part series "How to Change Your Mind" (Michael Pollan) from Netflix,  it was pretty good, it seems these substances have a lot of potential to help people. My only criticism is that it seemed mostly focused on the medicinal aspect but I think these substances also have a lot to offer to healthy people who would just like to have an beautiful or extraordinary or mystical experience.  In many ways it can be like a good vacation... restorative,  inspirational,  or many just fun. Then again it could also be like a bad vacation,  haha, certainly not without risk. But arguably MUCH safer than alcohol which according to WHO causes 3 million deaths a year.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/30/2022 at 3:04 PM, Gordo said:

but I think these substances also have a lot to offer to healthy people who would just like to have an beautiful or extraordinary or mystical experience. 

That's why they are also called 'recreational drugs'. If I ever wanted to try a recreational experience like that though, I'd like it to be a controlled one, with a known dosage of a pure, unadulterated or uncut active component. The recreational experience may be designed with successive stages, starting from the lower dosages since there is a known variability in the response. But the adventurous side maybe it's a part of the experience itself, not knowing exactly what to expect. As written in Stahl's treatise, it seems that psychotic reactions following the use of hallucinogens are very rare, unlike with cocaine and other drugs. Some adverse reactions liek anxiety may occur though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...