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    natural psychoactive drugs drogas psicoactivas sistema nervioso central

    Natural Psychoactive Drugs for Central Nervous System Disorders


    Therapeutic potential of natural psychoactive drugs for central nervous system disorders: a perspective from polypharmacology

    Genís Oña, and José Carlos Bouso.

    Current Medicinal Chemistry



    About the study

    This study describes how research on psychoactive drugs fits within the polypharmacology paradigm, reviewing the advantages and disadvantages of using natural psychoactive drugs to offer new understandings regarding their efficacy.

    The use of psychedelic drugs and polypharmacology is offering an opportunity to start a revolution in drug discovery and development. Instead of assuming that the best way to obtain drugs from natural products is to isolate their active components, in many cases we may need the whole plant to heal us.

    The research on psychoactive drugs and polypharmacology can be combined and benefit from each other so as to help in the development and commercialization of new multi-target drugs for other conditions. Two examples of multi-target NPDs (cannabis and ayahuasca) are explored in depth to show how both paradigms can be combined to improve their therapeutic potential.



    Rationale: In the drug development, the formation of highly selective ligands has been unsuccessful in the treatment of central nervous system disorders. Multi-target ligands, from the polypharmacology paradigm, are being proposed as treatments for these complex disorders, since they offer enhanced efficacy and a strong safety profile. 

    Methods: In this text, we describe how research on psychoactive drugs can be effectively combined with the polypharmacology paradigm, providing ayahuasca and cannabis research as examples. The advantages and disadvantages are also discussed. 

    Results: Natural products are the best examples of multi-target compounds, so they are of high interest within this paradigm. Additionally, recent research on psychoactive drugs of natural origin, such as ayahuasca and cannabis, has demonstrated the promising therapeutic potential for the treatment of some psychiatric and neurological disorders.


    Link to the article


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    Photo by Adrien Converse on Unsplash.

    Categories: Studies & papers , Polypharmacology
    Tags: ayahuasca , cannabis , study , therapeutic , psychoactive , psychedelics , polypharmacology , multi-target , plant , central nervous system