|Summary sheet: 5-MeO-aMT|
5-Methoxy-α-methyltryptamine (also known as 5-MeO-aMT, a,O-Dimethylserotonin, a,O-DMS, and "Alpha-O") is a synthetic psychedelic substance of the tryptamine chemical class that produces potent, long-lived psychedelic, entactogenic, and stimulant effects when administered.
Following a DEA bust of one of the world's major LSD suppliers in the 2000s, 5-MeO-AMT was reportedly found being sold in 4 mg tablets by the street name "Alpha-O". 5-MeO-AMT may have occasionally been sold under the guise of LSD in liquid, sugar cube, or blotter form. However, this may be based solely on DEA reports of finding it in the same distribution medium as opposed to actual misrepresentation.
5-MeO-aMT, or 5-methoxy-α-methyltryptamine, is a synthetic indole alkaloid molecule of the tryptamine class. Tryptamines share a core structure comprised of a bicyclic indole heterocycle attached at R3 to an amino group via an ethyl side chain. Like aMT, 5-MeO-aMT is substituted at the alpha carbon Rα of its tryptamine backbone with a methyl group, but differs from aMT by a methoxy group added to the R5 position.
A comparison of the R- and S-isomers found that the S-isomer is "clearly three or four times more potent" than the R-isomer. The S-isomer is the d- or dextrorotary one and has been noted to possess the absolute configuration of the active member of the isomer pairs of amphetamine, methamphetamine, and MDMA.
5-MeO-aMT's psychedelic effects are believed to come from its efficacy at the 5-HT2A receptor as a partial agonist. However, the role of these interactions and how they result in the psychedelic experience continues to remain elusive.
Disclaimer: The effects listed below cite the Subjective Effect Index (SEI), a research literature based on anecdotal reports and the personal experiences of PsychonautWiki contributors. As a result, they should be regarded with a healthy degree of skepticism. It is worth noting that these effects will not necessarily occur in a predictable or reliable manner, although higher doses are more liable to induce the full spectrum of effects. Likewise, adverse effects become much more likely with higher doses and may include addiction, serious injury, or death.
The physical effects of this substance may be overly intense for those who are not already experienced with hallucinogens.
- Spontaneous physical sensations - 5-MeO-aMT's "body high" can be described as an intense and constant all-encompassing sensation. In comparison to other psychedelics, this sensation does not manifest itself in the form of a continuously shifting tingling sensation that travels up and down the body spontaneously; it is instead felt like an extended, unchanging activation of every nerve ending on the body that lasts throughout the entire duration of the eexperienc. This continuous sensation is immensely pleasurable but can become overwhelmingly intense and almost a burden at higher levels.
- Stimulation - Regarding its effects on the physical energy levels of the user, 5-MeO-aMT tends to be very stimulating, resulting in jaw clenching and a shakiness and unsteadiness of the hands. The stimulation encourages the user to move around, run, dance, climb or engage in physical activities. In comparison, other more commonly used psychedelics such as psilocybin are sedating and relaxed.
- Difficulty urinating - A slight difficulty urinating is occasionally present.
- Temperature regulation suppression
- Headaches - Many people report headaches towards the end of the experience.
- Abnormal heartbeat
- Increased blood pressure
- Increased heart rate
- Increased perspiration
- Nausea - Given the physical discomfort experienced on this substance, moderate to extreme nausea is almost consistently reported when consumed at any dosage. This either passes once the user has vomited or gradually fades by itself as the peak sets in.
- Pupil dilation
The visual effects of 5-MeO-aMT are mostly present only when large doses have been consumed and are proportionally mild in comparison to the intensity of its accompanying cognitive and physical effects when compared to substances such as LSD and psilocin.
- Drifting (melting, flowing, breathing and morphing) - In comparison to other psychedelics, this effect can be described as highly detailed, slow and smooth in motion, static in appearance and unrealistic/cartoon-like in style.
- Symmetrical texture repetition - In comparison to more commonly used psychedelics such as LSD and psilocin, this effect is significantly less intricate and complex although it is still very distinct in its presence.
- After images
- Colour shifting
- Scenery slicing
- Internal hallucinations (autonomous entities; settings, sceneries, and landscapes; alterations in perspective and scenarios and plots) - This particular effect is uncommon during the first half of the trip but capable of manifesting itself towards the end of the experience, particularly if sleep deprivation starts to take its toll due to the abnormally long duration. The internal hallucinations are more common within dark environments and can be comprehensively described through their variations as lucid in believability, fixed in style, new experiences in content, autonomous in controllability, geometry-based in style and almost exclusively of a personal, religious, spiritual, science-fiction, fantasy, surreal, nonsensical or transcendental nature in their overall theme.
In comparison to more traditional psychedelics such as LSD, DMT and Psilocin, the 5-MeO-aMT head space is described as not nearly as deep, insightful or profound.
The total sum of these cognitive components regardless of the setting generally includes:
- Anxiety suppression
- Empathy, affection, and sociability enhancement - This component is consistently manifested only in the context of social settings in which one is within the company of others. These feelings of sociability, love and empathy are a little weaker and less sharp than with MDMA but still prove strong enough to provide long-lasting therapeutic effects.
- Analysis enhancement - This component is introspection dominant and consistently manifested only in the context of a non-social setting in which the user is alone.
- Conceptual thinking
- Emotionality enhancement
- Cognitive euphoria
- Immersion enhancement
- Increased music appreciation
- Memory suppression
- Thought acceleration
- Thought connectivity
- Time distortion
Anecdotal reports which describe the effects of this compound within our experience index include:
Additional experience reports can be found here:
Toxicity and harm potential
As a powerful monoamine reuptake inhibitor, 5-MeO-aMT can be dangerous when taken in excessive doses or when combined with substances such as MAOIs, RIMAs, stimulants and any substance which act as a releasing agent or reuptake inhibitor of serotonin and dopamine. There is one reported death from 5-MeO-aMT, but it is not known how much of the substance was taken. Erowid states that they have received "a handful of unverifiable reports of hospitalization after high-dose (over 60 mg oral) 5-MeO-aMT ingestion."
The toxicity and long-term health effects of recreational 5-MeO-aMT use do not seem to have been studied in any scientific context and the exact toxic dose is unknown. This is because 5-MeO-aMT is a research chemical with very little history of human usage. Anecdotal evidence from people who have tried 5-MeO-aMT within the psychedelic community suggests that there are no negative health effects attributed to simply trying the substance by itself at low to moderate doses and using it very sparingly (but nothing can be completely guaranteed). Independent research should always be done to ensure that a combination of two or more substances is safe before consumption.
It is worth noting that 5-MeO-aMT's analogue αET has been shown to produce long-lasting serotonergic neurotoxicity at very high doses. It is possible that 5-MeO-aMT could cause the same neurotoxicity at high dosages or with repeated long-term use.
It is strongly recommended that one use harm reduction practices when using this substance.
Tolerance and addiction potential
5-MeO-aMT is not habit-forming and the desire to use it can actually decrease with use. It is most often self-regulating.
Tolerance to the effects of 5-MeO-aMT are built almost immediately after ingestion. After that, it takes about Time to half tolerance::1 week for the tolerance to be reduced to half and Time to zero tolerance::2 weeks to be back at baseline (in the absence of further consumption). 5-MeO-aMT presents cross-tolerance with all psychedelics, meaning that after the consumption of 5-MeO-aMT all psychedelics will have a reduced effect.
Although many psychoactive substances are reasonably safe to use on their own, they can suddenly become dangerous or even life-threatening when combined with other substances. The following list includes some known dangerous combinations (although it is not guaranteed to include all of them). Independent research (e.g. Google, DuckDuckGo) should always be conducted to ensure that a combination of two or more substances is safe to consume. Some of the listed interactions have been sourced from TripSit.
- Lithium - Lithium is commonly prescribed for the treatment of bipolar disorder. There is a large body of anecdotal evidence that suggests taking it with psychedelics significantly increases the risk of psychosis and seizures. As a result, this combination is strictly discouraged.
- Cannabis - Cannabis may have an unexpectedly strong and unpredictable synergy with the effects of 5-MeO-aMT. Caution is advised with this combination as it can significantly increase the risk of adverse psychological reactions like anxiety, paranoia, panic attacks, and psychosis. Users are advised to start off with only a fraction of their normal cannabis dose and take long breaks between hits to avoid unintentional overdose.
- Stimulants - Stimulants like amphetamine, cocaine or methylphenidate affect many parts of the brain and alter dopaminergic function. This combination can increase the risk of anxiety, paranoia, panic attacks, and thought loops. This interaction may also result in an elevated risk of mania and psychosis.
- Tramadol - Tramadol is well-documented to lower the seizure threshold and psychedelics may act to trigger seizures in susceptible individuals.
Deaths from 5-MeO-aMT are rare but as a powerful monoamine reuptake inhibitor (MRI), injury could occur when excessive doses are taken or when it is taken with substances such as MAOIs, RIMAs, stimulants and any substance which act as a releasing agent or reuptake inhibitor of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine.
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- Shulgin, A., & Shulgin, A. (1991). Erowid Online Books: "TIHKAL" - #5 - a,O-DMS. Retrieved Jun 20, 2017.
- Zimmerman, Michelle M. (January–June 2003). "The Identification of 5-Methoxy-alpha-methyltryptamine (5-MeO-AMT)". Microgram Journal. Drug Enforcement Administration. 1. Retrieved 2011-09-16.
- Erowid 5-MeO-AMT Vault : Police Reports of 5-MeO-AMT | https://www.erowid.org/chemicals/5meo_amt/5meo_amt_info2.shtml
- The Effects of Non-Medically Used Psychoactive Drugs on Monoamine Neurotransmission in Rat Brain | https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17223101
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- 5-MeO-aMT (Alphamethyltryptamine, IT-290) Fatalities / Deaths by Erowid | https://www.erowid.org/chemicals/5-MeO-aMT/5-MeO-aMT_death.shtml
- Reduction in brain serotonin markers by α-ethyltryptamine (Monase) (ScienceDirect) | http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/001429999190686K
- Talaie, H.; Panahandeh, R.; Fayaznouri, M. R.; Asadi, Z.; Abdollahi, M. (2009). "Dose-independent occurrence of seizure with tramadol". Journal of Medical Toxicology. 5 (2): 63–67. doi:10.1007/BF03161089. ISSN 1556-9039.
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors, opioid analgesics and serotonin toxicity | http://bja.oxfordjournals.org/content/95/4/434