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Pharmacologic Similarities and Differences Among Hallucinogens

Hallucinogens constitute a unique class of substances that cause changes in the user’s thoughts, perceptions, and mood through various mechanisms of action. Although the serotonergic hallucinogens such as lysergic acid diethylamide, psilocybin, and N,N-dimethyltryptamine have been termed the classical hallucinogens, many hallucinogens elicit their actions through other mechanisms such as N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonism, opioid receptor agonism, or inhibition of the reuptake of monoamines including serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. The aim of this article is to compare the pharmacologic similarities and differences among substances within the hallucinogen class and their impact on physical and psychiatric effects. Potential toxicities, including life-threatening and long-term effects, will be reviewed.

Waters, K. (2021). Pharmacologic Similarities and Differences Among Hallucinogens. J Clin Pharmacol, 61 Suppl 2, S100-s113. doi:10.1002/jcph.1917