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Ayahuasca is a psychotropic drink is prepared from segments of the vine Banisteriopsis caapi. Sections of vine are boiled with leaves from any of a large number of other plants (such as Psychotria viridis or Diplopterys cabrerana) yielding a brew containing the powerful hallucinogenic alkaloids harmaline[?], harmine[?], d-tetrahydroharmine[?], and N,N-dimethyltryptamine[?], combined with an MAOI.

Other names:

  • "caapi" in Brazil
  • "yage" or "yaje" in Colombia
  • "ayahuasca" in Ecuador and Peru ("vine of the dead" or "vine of souls": in Quechua aya means "spirit," "ancestor," or "dead person," while huasca means "vine" or "rope")

Nowadays, the term ayahuasca also means analogous concoctions made with other plants that contain the two main components, an MAOI and a DMT. The DMT is the main "active ingredient", causing the desired effects. The MAOI is necessary for DMT to be taken orally.

  • Acacia maidenii (Maiden's Wattle) - bark
  • Acacia phlebophylla (Maiden's Wattle)
  • Anadenanthera peregrina, colubrina, excelsa, macrocarpa
  • Banisteriopsis caapi - leaves?
  • Mimosa hostilis (Jurema) - root bark
  • Phalaris arundinacea (reed canary grass)
  • Phalaris tuberosa (Phalaris aquatica, harding grass)
  • Psychotria viridis (Chacruna) - leaves

Some plant sources of MAOI:

  • Peganum harmala (Syrian Rue) - seeds
  • Banisteriopsis caapi


to be filled in

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