3D model (JSmol)
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|Molar mass||114.10 g/mol|
|Solubility in ethanol||slightly soluble|
|Solubility in methanol||very soluble|
|Except where noted otherwise, data are given for|
materials in their standard state
(at 25 °C, 100 kPa)
Infobox disclaimer and references
Muscimol (agarin, pantherine) is the major psychoactive alkaloid present in many mushrooms of the Amanita genus. Unlike psilocybin, a tryptamine, muscimol is a potent, selective agonist of the GABAA receptor.
Muscimol is produced naturally in the mushrooms Amanita muscaria, Amanita pantherina, and Amanita gemmata, along with muscarine, muscazone, and ibotenic acid. Of these, only A. muscaria and A. pantherina are safe for human consumption, the other being lethally poisonous in large doses. It is thought that, in A. muscaria, the layer just below the skin of the cap contains the highest amount of muscimol, and is therefore the most psychoactive portion.
Muscimol is a potent GABAA agonist, which is a receptor for the brain's major inhibitory neurotransmitter, GABA. The primary use for muscimol has become lab research, as the chemical essentially "turns off" part of the brain. When muscimol is administered, it has been shown active in the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, and cerebellum.
During a test involving rabbits connected to an EEG, muscimol showed a distinctly synchronized EEG tracing. This is substantially different from other indolic psychedelics, as brainwave patterns will generally show a desynchronization. In higher doses (2mg/kg), the EEG will show characteristic spikes.
When used in vivo, muscimol will pass through the human body, and be excreted (as muscimol) in the subject's urine.
LD50 mice: 3.8 mg/kg s.c, 2.5 mg/kg i.p.
LD50 rats: 4.5 mg/kg i.v, 45 mg/kg orally.
The effects of muscimol are substantially different from psilocybin, as the chemicals target separate parts of the brain. Muscimol has been shown to lack "structured" hallucinations in most cases, and the effects are frequently compared to a lucid dream state.
- Merck Index, 12th Edition
- Ito Y, Segawa K, Fukuda H. 1995 "Functional diversity of GABAA receptor ligand-gated chloride channels in rat synaptoneurosomes" Synapse 19(3):188-96.
- Rätsch, Christian. (1998). The Encyclopedia of Psychoactive Plants. Rochester, VT: Park Street Press.
- Beaumont K, Chilton W. S., Yamamura H. I., Enna S. J. (1978). "Muscimol binding in rat brain: association with synaptic GABA receptors". Brain Res. 148 (1): 153–62. doi:10.1016/0006-8993(78)90385-2.
- S. R. Snodgrass (1978). "Use of 3H-muscimol for GABA receptor studies". Nature. 273 (1): 392–394. doi:10.1038/273392a0.
- G. A. R. Johnston, D. R. Curtis, W. C. de Groat and A. W. Duggan (1968). "Central actions of ibotenic acid and muscimol". Biochemical Pharmacology. 17 (12): 2488–2489. doi:10.1016/0006-2952(68)90141-X.