The use patterns of novel psychedelics: experiential fingerprints of substituted phenethylamines, tryptamines and lysergamides

The growing availability and variability of novel psychedelics present new challenges for drug policy, as well as opportunities for clinical research. However, unlike their classic derivatives like psilocybin or lsd, little is known about these drugs. Using an online questionnaire, we asked people what novel psychedelic substances they were using, and what they were experience.

Most participants reported using novel phenethylamines (including 2C-B), seconded by tryptamines (including  4-AcO-DMT) and lysergamides (mainly 1P-LSD). Phenethylamines (especially 25i-NBOMe and DOB) were associated with significantly more physical adverse effects than tryptamines or lysergamides. This included reports of acute gastrointestinal and cardiovascular adverse effects.

Using machine learning, we compared reports of subjective effects after usage of 2C-B, 4-AcO-DMT, and 1P-LSD. We found that these substances could be distinguished based on their entheogenic properties. Namely, both positive and negative experiences of ego dissolution were more prominent after 4-AcO-DMT or 1P-LSD, compared to 2C-B.

In conclusion: Novel psychedelic classes hold distinct risk profiles and phenomenology, the latter potentially clouded by the subjective nature of these experiences. Further targeted research is warranted.

Self-reported NPS use and adverse effects per structural family. a Percentage of NPs reported to have been previously tried by respondents. In (b) can be seen the incidence rate of adverse physical and psychological side effect for each drug. For both (a) and (b), proportions are listed in relation to each colour-matched family sample size

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