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Clin Toxicol. 1977;11(4):459-72.

Peyote, a potential ethnopharmacologic agent for alcoholism and other drug dependencies: possible biochemical rationale.


The authors examine folk psychiatry among Native American Church members from an enthnopharmacologic viewpoint. Alcohol and opiate abuse among Indian and non-Indian are presented in case histories proving to be asymptomatic under Indian guidance and through participation in the peyote ritual. The biochemical alkaloids common in the peyote cactus, rather than just the psychoactive substances (mescaline), are purported to be pharmacologically similar to the neuroamine-derived alkaloids found in the brain during alcohol intoxification. Evidence is reviewed that points out possible common features of alcohol and opiate dependence leading to the speculation for a common mode of treatment may reside in plants rich in isoquinoline alkaloids.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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