Analysis of hallucinogenic constituents in Amanita mushrooms circulated in Japan

Forensic Sci Int. 2006 Dec 20;164(2-3):172-8. doi: 10.1016/j.forsciint.2006.01.004. Epub 2006 Feb 7.


The constituents of seven mushrooms sold as Amanita muscaria or Amanita pantherina (five A. muscaria and two A. pantherina) and four "extracts purported to contain A. muscaria" products that are currently circulated in Japan were determined. All mushroom samples were identified as A. muscaria or A. pantherina by macroscopic and microscopic observation. The dissociative constituents, ibotenic acid (IBO) and muscimol (MUS), were extracted with 70% methanol twice and determined by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. The IBO (as the hydrate)/MUS contents were in the range of <10-2845ppm/46-1052ppm in the cap of A. muscaria and 188-269ppm/1554-1880ppm in the cap of A. pantherina. In the caps, these compounds had a tendency to be more concentrated in the flesh than in the cuticle. On the other hand, the IBO/MUS contents in the stem were far lower than in the caps. In the "extracts purported to contain A. muscaria" products, IBO/MUS were detected below the lower limit of calibration curve (<10ppm/<25ppm) or not detected. However, these samples contained other psychoactive compounds, such as psychoactive tryptamines (5-methoxy-N,N-diisopropyltryptamine and 5-methoxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine), reversible monoamine oxidase inhibitors (harmine and harmaline) and tropane alkaloids (atropine and scopolamine), which were not quantified. This is the first report of the chemical analysis of Amanita mushrooms that are circulated in the drug market.

MeSH terms

  • Amanita / chemistry*
  • Atropine / analysis
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Agonists / analysis*
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Agonists / chemistry
  • Forensic Toxicology
  • GABA Agonists / analysis*
  • GABA Agonists / chemistry
  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
  • Harmaline / analysis
  • Harmine / analysis
  • Ibotenic Acid / analysis*
  • Ibotenic Acid / chemistry
  • Japan
  • Molecular Structure
  • Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors / analysis
  • Muscarinic Antagonists / analysis
  • Muscimol / analysis*
  • Muscimol / chemistry
  • Scopolamine / analysis
  • Tryptamines / analysis


  • Excitatory Amino Acid Agonists
  • GABA Agonists
  • Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors
  • Muscarinic Antagonists
  • Tryptamines
  • Ibotenic Acid
  • Muscimol
  • Harmine
  • Atropine
  • Harmaline
  • Scopolamine