Different Magic Mushrooms – Different Chemical Cocktails – Different Effects?

Importance of Mushroom Chemotype for Clinical Experience

Currently, research and development in the psilocybin space follows the traditional pharmaceutical model — using one, pure, synthetic ingredient, i.e., synthetic psilocybin.  See Compass.  This approach has some significant benefits, especially in terms of administering known amounts of known molecules to the study participants.  See Taking Pure Psilocybin is Different from Eating Magic Mushrooms.

However, many anecdotal reports indicate that different species of magic mushrooms create different effects on the user.  These reports make sense from a chemical perspective:

  • The chemicals consumed by a user play a significant role in the clinical effect experienced by that user.  (Other factors, like set & setting, also play a role).
  • Generally speaking, different chemicals (aka, active ingredients, molecules, compounds, drugs) produce different clinical effects.
  • Different species of mushrooms have different chemotypes.  In other words, they contain different cocktails of active ingredients.  In particular, they contain different amounts of several psilocybin derivatives.
  • One would expect that different mushrooms, containing different amounts of different drugs, would produce different effects.  (In the cannabis industry, this phenomenon is called the “Entourage Effect.”)

Different Effects from Different Mushrooms

Below we have summarized some comments that we received this week about how selecting a particular species of magic mushrooms affects the user’s experience.

Overall, the conversation seems to lean towards the following conclusions: (1) Different species of magic mushrooms can produce significantly different clinical effects; (2) Different strains of the same species exhibit less clinical variation.

Many people point to a general distinction between mushrooms that grow on wood substrates (aka “wood lovers”) and those that grow on other substrates.  For example, one experienced cultivator asserted that “the difference in B+ when grown on standard cube sub vs enhanced hardwood is striking. This leads me to believe lignin enhances secondary and tertiary active properties.”  There also appears to be a correlation between wood loving mushrooms and symptoms of late-onset muscle weakness and loss of coordination.  See Wood Lover Paralysis.

** Please use the comments section below to provide your thoughts and/or references to other sources about this topic.  

Relevant Quotes about Different Species of Magic Mushrooms Producing Different Effects

  • “The whole mushroom and it’s (sic) components are much better than refining select substances from it.”
  • “This ‘different strain different effect’ bs is just a marketing gimmick.”
  • “One must question how much of the identity is simply marketing, and therefore, how different the effects will actually be from one magic truffle ‘variety’ to the next.”
  • “Different in very subtle ways within species but radically different between species. Secondary and tertiary active and modulating compounds are more pronounced in non-cubensis species and actual differences within cubensis are subtle to non-existent”
  • “From the point of view in regard to bioassay, I’d say subtle but discernable, having cultivated and bioassayed well over 30 various varieties of P. cubensis. Chemically, based upon primary compound levels of Psilocin, Psilocybin, Baeocystin/nor, the differences would certainly be non-existent, but bioassay though subjective, suggests that’s not entirely the case.”
  • “I too have had many ‘flavors’ of cubensis and differences have always been subtle and confined to a level of clear head vs a more clouded perception for example I have found Thai varieties quite clear whereas albinos ( PE and plain albino cube) are quite fuzzy and a more sedate experience.  This said the difference in B+ when grown on standard cube sub vs enhanced hardwood is striking. This leads me to believe lignin enhances secondary and tertiary active properties”
  • “My least favourite are the truffles, as there’s minimal visuals & it’s more just a head fuck.”

If you have feedback on this topic, please share your thoughts using the comments, below.

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