ABSTRACT of Homebrewed Psilocybin: Can New Routes for Pharmaceutical Psilocybin Production Enable Recreational Use?
Psilocybin, a drug most commonly recognized as a recreational psychedelic, is quickly gaining attention as a promising therapy for an expanding range of neurological conditions, including depression, anxiety, and addiction. This growing interest has led to many recent advancements in psilocybin synthesis strategies, including multiple in vivo fermentation-based approaches catalyzed by recombinant microorganisms. In this work, we show that psilocybin can be produced in biologically relevant quantities using a recombinant E. coli strain in a homebrew style environment. In less than 2 days, we successfully produced approximately 300 mg/L of psilocybin under simple conditions with easily sourced equipment and supplies. This finding raises the question of how this new technology should be regulated as to not facilitate clandestine biosynthesis efforts, while still enabling advancements in psilocybin synthesis technology for pharmaceutical applications. Here, we present our homebrew results, and suggestions on how to address the regulatory concerns accompanying this new technology.
This paper points to another research paper for providing the "metabolic pathway for the biosynthetic production of psilocybin".
Fricke, J., Blei, F., & Hoffmeister, D. (2017). Enzymatic Synthesis of Psilocybin. Angewandte Chemie International Edition, 56(40), 12352–12355. doi:10.1002/anie.201705489
That paper's abstract reads:
Psilocybin is the psychotropic tryptamine-derived natural product of Psilocybe carpophores, the so-called “magic mushrooms”. Although its structure has been known for 60 years, the enzymatic basis of its biosynthesis has remained obscure. We characterized four psilocybin biosynthesis enzymes, namely i) PsiD, which represents a new class of fungal l-tryptophan decarboxylases, i i) PsiK, which catalyzes the phosphotransfer step, iii) the methyltransferase PsiM, catalyzing iterative N-methyl transfer as the terminal biosynthetic step, and iv) PsiH, a monooxygenase. In a combined PsiD/PsiK/PsiM reaction, psilocybin was synthesized enzymatically in a tep-economic route from 4-hydroxy-l-tryptophan. Given the renewed pharmaceutical interest in psilocybin our results may lay the foundation for its biotechnological production.
Yes, it was a very interesting read. I only wish I had more bio-chem knowledge/skills to see if it could be duplicated.
Edited by simplegood78, 14 October 2021 - 12:21 AM.