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|Author||Alexander and Ann Shulgin|
|Subject||Pharmacology, Autobiography, Psychoactive drugs|
PiHKAL: A Chemical Love Story is a book by Dr. Alexander Shulgin and Ann Shulgin, published in 1991. The subject of the work is psychoactive phenethylamine chemical derivatives, notably those that act as psychedelics and/or empathogen-entactogens. The main title, PiHKAL, is an acronym that stands for "Phenethylamines I Have Known and Loved."
The book is arranged into two parts, the first part being a fictionalized autobiography of the couple and the second part describing 179 different psychedelic compounds (most of which Shulgin discovered himself), including detailed synthesis instructions, bioassays, dosages, and other commentary.
The second part was made freely available by Shulgin on Erowid while the first part is available only in the printed text. While the reactions described are beyond the ability of people with a basic chemistry education, some tend to emphasize techniques that do not require difficult-to-obtain chemicals. Notable among these are the use of mercury-aluminum amalgam (an unusual but easy to obtain reagent) as a reducing agent and detailed suggestions on legal plant sources of important drug precursors such as safrole.
Through PIHKAL (and later TIHKAL ), Shulgin sought to ensure that his discoveries would escape the limits of professional research labs and find their way to the public, a goal consistent with his stated beliefs that psychedelic drugs can be valuable tools for self-exploration. The MDMA ("ecstasy") synthesis published in PIHKAL remains one of the most common clandestine methods of its manufacture to this day. Many countries have banned the major substances for which this book gives directions for synthesis, such as 2C-B, 2C-T-2, and 2C-T-7. In the United Kingdom, all but phenethylamine are illegal.[ citation needed ]
In 1994, two years after PIHKAL was published, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) raided Shulgin's lab and requested that he turn over his DEA license. Richard Meyer, spokesman for DEA's San Francisco Field Division, has stated in reference to PIHKAL "It is our opinion that those books are pretty much cookbooks on how to make illegal drugs. Agents tell me that in clandestine labs that they have raided, they have found copies of those books," suggesting that the publication of PIHKAL and the termination of Shulgin's license may have been related. 
The "Essential Amphetamines" are what Shulgin describes as ten amphetamines that differ from natural products such as safrole or myristicin by an amine group (PIHKAL Entry #157 TMA). The list consists of:
Not all of these chemicals are bioassayed in PIHKAL; some are merely mentioned.
The so-called "magical half-dozen" refers to Shulgin's self-rated most important phenethylamine compounds, all of which except mescaline he developed and synthesized himself. They are found within the first book of PIHKAL, and are as follows:
All six are now Schedule I controlled substances in the United States. 
|120||MEDA||3-methoxy-4,5-Ethylenedioxy-A [Erowid corrected]|
2C-T-7 is a psychedelic phenethylamine of the 2C family. In his book PiHKAL: A Chemical Love Story, Alexander Shulgin lists the dosage range as 10 to 30 mg. 2C-T-7 is generally taken orally, and produces psychedelic and entactogenic effects that last 8 to 15 hours. Up until Operation Web Tryp and three deaths, two of which involved the use of other drugs in addition to 2C-T-7, and one which involved an excessive insufflated dose, 2C-T-7 was sold commercially in Dutch and Japanese smartshops and online. It is known on the streets as Blue Mystic or 7th Heaven. There has been little real research done on this chemical other than Shulgin's comments in PiHKAL and a few small animal studies mostly aimed at detecting metabolites.
TIHKAL: The Continuation is a 1997 book written by Alexander Shulgin and Ann Shulgin about a family of psychoactive drugs known as tryptamines. A sequel to PIHKAL: A Chemical Love Story, TIHKAL is an acronym that stands for "Tryptamines I Have Known and Loved".
2,5-Dimethoxy-4-methylamphetamine is a psychedelic and a substituted amphetamine. It was first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin, and later reported in his book PiHKAL: A Chemical Love Story. DOM is classified as a Schedule I substance in the United States, and is similarly controlled in other parts of the world. Internationally, it is a Schedule I drug under the Convention on Psychotropic Substances. It is generally taken orally.
Dimethoxybromoamphetamine (DOB), also known as brolamfetamine (INN) and bromo-DMA, is a psychedelic drug and substituted amphetamine of the phenethylamine class of compounds. DOB was first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin in 1967. Its synthesis and effects are documented in Shulgin's book PiHKAL: A Chemical Love Story.
3,4-Methylenedioxyamphetamine is an empathogen-entactogen, psychostimulant, and psychedelic drug of the amphetamine family that is encountered mainly as a recreational drug. In terms of pharmacology, MDA acts most importantly as a serotonin–norepinephrine–dopamine releasing agent (SNDRA). In most countries, the drug is a controlled substance and its possession and sale are illegal.
Escaline (3,5-methoxy-4-ethoxyphenethylamine) is a psychedelic drug and entheogen of the phenethylamine class of compounds. Escaline was first synthesized and reported in the scientific literature by Benington, et al., in 1954, but was later re-examined in the laboratory of David E. Nichols, who prepared a series of mescaline analogues that included escaline, proscaline, and isoproscaline. The effects of this and related mescaline analogues in humans were first described by Alexander Shulgin. In his book PiHKAL , Shulgin lists the dosage range as 40 to 60 mg, consumed orally. The duration of action was stated to be 8–12 hours.
Trimethoxyamphetamines (TMAs) are a family of isomeric psychedelic hallucinogenic drugs. There exist six different TMAs that differ only in the position of the three methoxy groups: TMA, TMA-2, TMA-3, TMA-4, TMA-5, and TMA-6. The TMAs are analogs of the phenethylamine cactus alkaloid mescaline. The TMAs are substituted amphetamines, however, their mechanism of action is more complex than that of the unsubstituted compound amphetamine, probably involving agonist activity on serotonin receptors such as the 5HT2A receptor in addition to the generalised dopamine receptor agonism typical of most amphetamines. This action on serotonergic receptors likely underlie the psychedelic effects of these compounds. It is reported that some TMAs elicit a range of emotions ranging from sadness to empathy and euphoria. TMA was first synthesized by Hey, in 1947. Synthesis data as well as human activity data has been published in the book PiHKAL.
2,5-Dimethoxy-4-chloroamphetamine (DOC) is a psychedelic drug of the phenethylamine and amphetamine chemical classes. It was presumably first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin, and was described in his book PiHKAL.
2C-T is a psychedelic and hallucinogenic drug of the 2C family. It is used by some as an entheogen. It has structural and pharmacodynamic properties similar to the drugs mescaline and 2C-T-2.
Lophophine is a putative psychedelic and entactogen drug of the methylenedioxyphenethylamine class. It is the α-demethylated homologue of MMDA, and is also closely related to mescaline.
2,5-Dimethoxy-4-ethylamphetamine is a psychedelic drug of the phenethylamine and amphetamine chemical classes. It was first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin, and was described in his book PiHKAL.
MMDA is a psychedelic and entactogen drug of the amphetamine class. It is an analogue of lophophine, MDA, and MDMA.
DMMDA-2 is a psychedelic phenethylamine discussed by Alexander Shulgin in his book PiHKAL ; however, he was not the first to synthesize it. Shulgin comments in his book that a 50 milligram dose of DMMDA-2 produces similar effects to MDA. DMMDA-2 can be synthesized from dillapiole.
Ganesha (2,5-dimethoxy-3,4-dimethylamphetamine) is a lesser-known psychedelic drug. It is also a substituted amphetamine. It was first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin. In his book PiHKAL, the dosage range is listed as 24–32 mg. The drug is usually taken orally, although other routes such as rectally may also be used. Ganesha is synthesized from 2,5-dimethoxy-3,4-dimethylbenzaldehyde. Ganesha is the amphetamine analog of 2C-G. It is a particularly long lasting drug, with the duration listed in PiHKAL as being 18–24 hours, which might make it undesirable to some users. It is named after the Hindu deity, Ganesha. Very little is known about the dangers or toxicity of ganesha. Effects of ganesha include:
Substituted methylenedioxy- phenethylamines (MDxx) are a large chemical class of derivatives of the phenethylamines, which includes many psychoactive drugs that act as entactogens, psychedelics, and/or stimulants, as well as entheogens. These agents are used as research chemicals, designer drugs and as recreational substances.
2,5-Dimethoxy-3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine (DMMDA) is a psychedelic drug of the phenethylamine and amphetamine chemical classes. It was first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin and was described in his book PiHKAL. Shulgin listed the dosage as 30–75 mg and the duration as 6–8 hours. He reported DMMDA as producing LSD-like images, mydriasis, ataxia, and time dilation.
EMM (2-ethoxy-4,5-dimethoxyamphetamine) is a lesser-known substituted amphetamine. It is a dimethoxy-ethoxy analog of trimethoxyamphetamine (TMA-2). EMM was first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin. In his book PiHKAL, both the dosage and duration are unknown. EMM produces few to no effects. Very little data exists about the pharmacological properties, metabolism, and toxicity of EMM.
2,5-Dimethoxy-4-ethoxyamphetamine (MEM) is a psychedelic drug of the phenethylamine and amphetamine chemical classes. It was first synthesized by Alexander Shulgin. In his book PiHKAL, he lists the active dose range as 20–50 mg, and the duration as 10–14 hours. According to Shulgin, MEM produces color enhancement, visual phenomena, and pattern movement, among other effects.
MMDA-2 (2-methoxy-4,5-methylenedioxyamphetamine) is a psychedelic drug of the amphetamine class. It is closely related to MMDA and MDA.
N-Methyl-2-methoxy-4,5-methylenedioxyamphetamine is a psychedelic drug of the amphetamine class. It is the N-methylated derivative of MMDA-2, and it is also an analog of MDMA and 6-methyl-MDA.