Influence of environmental factors and cultural methods on the content of N,N‑dimethyltryptamine in psychotria viridis (Rubiaceae)

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Abstract

Psychotria viridis is one of the species that produces N,N-dimethyltryptamine. Its decoction together with other species, such as Banisteriopsis caapi, produces ayahuasca, a beverage used for ritualistic and medicinal purposes. The goal of this study was to understand how environmental factors and cultivation methods influenced the content of N,N-dimethyltryptamine in P. viridis. Over all four seasons, leaf samples were collected from 25 different locations in 14 Brazilian states, and Federal District. Environmental parameters, micro and macronutrients, plant characteristics, information on farming methods were correlated with N,N-dimethyltryptamine content, determined by gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Greatest effects on the N,N-dimethyltryptamine amount were associated with seasonality, altitude, latitude and biome type. A positive correlation between N and Mg content and N,N-dimethyltryptamine levels was statistically established. By regression analysis, the adequate foliar nutrient levels that would result in the concentration of N,N-dimethyltryptamine in cultivated plants similar to that of Amazonian P. viridis were equated.

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Cavalcante, A. D., Cardoso, G. A., De Oliveira, F. L. P., Bearzoti, E., Okuma, A. A., Duarte, L. P., & Vieira-Filho, S. A. (2018). Influence of environmental factors and cultural methods on the content of N,N‑dimethyltryptamine in psychotria viridis (Rubiaceae). Journal of the Brazilian Chemical Society, 29(6), 1245–1255. https://doi.org/10.21577/0103-5053.20170221

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