When You Pop a Molly, Just What Exactly Are You Sweating?

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Its chemical name is methylenedioxymethamphetamine, but it is more commonly referred to as MDMA, A.K.A. “Molly” — the active ingredient in the party drug Ecstasy. It was first synthesized in 1912 by German chemist Anton Köllisch, but usage of the stimulant didn’t really begin taking off until the 1970s, when pharmacologist Alexander Shulgin resynthesized the chemical to share with his friends, particularly psychotherapist Leo Zeff.

Zeff extolled the drug’s anxiety-alleviating virtues as a means to get therapy patients to reveal their most buried fears, and was said to have trained 4,000 therapists in how to use it. The drug soon found its way out of psychotherapy and onto dance floors all across Europe, where it immediately became a hit.

 

 

Further Reading–

No Evidence that MDMA-Induced Enhancement of Emotional Empathy Is Related to Peripheral Oxytocin Levels or 5-HT1a Receptor Activation
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/artic…

Severe Dopaminergic Neurotoxicity in Primates After a Common Recreational Dose Regimen of MDMA (“Ecstasy”)
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/297…

New Data Intensify the Agony Over Ecstasy
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/239…

What are the effects of the drug Ecstasy?
http://www.scientificamerican.com/art…

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