September 1966

Psychological Effects and Metabolism of N,N-diethyltryptamine in Man

Author Affiliations

From the National Institute of Mental Health, Clinical Neuropharmacology Research Center, Saint Elizabeth's Hospital, Washington, DC, and Laboratory of Clinical Science and Laboratory of Psychology, National Institute of Mental Health, Bethesda, Md.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1966;15(3):320-329. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1966.01730150096014

SIMPLE INDOLE derivatives like the alkylated tryptamines, N,N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT) and N,N-diethyltryptamine (DET), produce psychotogenic-like symptoms similar to lysergic acid diethyemide (LSD) and mescaline.1-4

One of the important metabolic pathways of DET has been shown to be by 6-hydroxylation.5 The known metabolic pathways of DET are summarized in Fig 1.

Other investigators have reported that naturally occurring indole derivatives, ie, tryptamine itself, skatole, melatonin, can also be hydroxylated in the six position.6-8 This suggests the possibility that this enzyme system might be involved in spontaneously occurring psychoses.

The present study was undertaken to compare the metabolism of DET in a group of chronic schizophrenic patients and in a group of normal volunteers and to correlate the individual rate of DET metabolism with the psychological effects in man.

Methods  Experimental Procedure.—A 1 mg/kg dose of DET was administered intramuscularly to ten normal

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