An analytical study of iboga alkaloids contained in Tabernanthe iboga-derived products offered by ibogaine treatment providers

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Abstract

Background: Therapeutic properties of ibogaine in the treatment of addiction are attracting both clinicians and patients to its use. Since ibogaine is not an authorized medicine, the quality of these products is not always known, increasing the probability of adverse reactions. Objective: This study collects different types of iboga-derived samples from treatment providers, vendors and online buyers to analyse their content. Methods: Analysis of iboga products (n = 16) was performed using gas chromatography and mass spectrometry methods (GC/MS). Products included Iboga root bark, Total Alkaloids (TA), Purified Total Alkaloids (PTA HCl), ibogaine hydrochloride (ibogaine HCl) and one Voacanga africana root bark. Results: The content of ibogaine was highly variable, ranging from 0.6% to 11.2% for products sold as iboga root bark, from 8.2% to 32.9% for products sold as TA, 73.7% for one sample sold as PTA and from 61.5% to 73.4% for products sold as ibogaine HCl. One sample did not show any iboga alkaloids. Other alkaloids and unknown substances were found in almost all samples. Discussion: The purity of iboga products is highly variable. These results should be taken into consideration by suppliers and users, especially regarding correct dosing to avoid overdose, as well as potential interactions with other substances.

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Bouso, J. C., Fornís, I., Vilamala, M. V., De Loenen, B., Sainz-Cort, A., Jiménez-Garrido, D. F., … Jenks, C. W. (2020). An analytical study of iboga alkaloids contained in Tabernanthe iboga-derived products offered by ibogaine treatment providers. Revista de Psiquiatria Clinica, 47(2), 51–54. https://doi.org/10.1590/0101-60830000000231

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