Book II of PiHKAL: A Chemical Love Story. Alexander & Ann Shulgin #64: DOC
#64 DOC SYNTHESIS: A solution of 6.96 g 2,5-dimethoxyamphetamine hydrochloride () in 250 mL H2O was made basic with aqueous NaOH and extracted with 3×75 mL CH2Cl2. After removal of the solvent from the pooled extracts under vacuum, the residual free base was dissolved in 36 g glacial acetic acid and, with good stirring, cooled to 0 °C with an external ice bath. There was then added, with a Pasteur pipette, 3 mL of liquid chlorine. The generation of HCl was evident, and the reaction was allowed to stir for an additional 3 h. The mixture was then poured into 300 mL H2O and washed with 3×100 mL Et2O. The aqueous phase was made basic with NaOH and extracted with 3×150 mL CH2Cl2. After removal of the solvent from the pooled extracts, the residue was dissolved in Et2O and saturated with anhydrous HCl gas. There was the formation of a heavy oily precipitate. The ether supernatent was decanted, and the residue was intimately mixed with 200 mL of fresh anhydrous Et2O. Everything set up as an off-white crystalline mass weighing 2.3 g. This was dissolved in 12 mL of boiling MeOH and diluted with 230 mL boiling Et2O. The clear solution was quickly filtered to give a clear, pale amber mother liquor, which soon started depositing lustrous white crystals. After filtering, Et2O washing, and air drying to constant weight, there was obtained 1.4 g of 2,5-dimethoxy-4-chloroamphetamine hydrochloride (DOC) From the mother liquors (from the original HCl saturation) an equal amount of product could be obtained by exploiting the acetone insolubility of the hydrochloride salt of the product. The published mp of this salt, from acetone/EtOH, is 187–188 °C. A sample of this hydrochloride salt, prepared from the amino analogue via diazotization and eventual hydrolysis of an acetylated precursor, was recrystallized from EtOH/ether and had a mp of 193–194.5 °C.
DOSAGE: 1.5–3.0 mg.
DURATION: 12–24 h.
QUALITATIVE COMMENTS: (with 1.6 mg) “I was hit with a slightly light head; the effects were quite real. I was disconnected, and somehow spacey, but this was a favorable spacey which was kind of fun. Somewhere at about the sixth hour I realized that I was beginning to drop off a bit, but six hours later yet, there was still a lot of memory. This is a long thing.”
(with 2.4 mg) “This is what I might call an archetypical psychedelic. Everything is there in spades, with few if any of the subtle graces, the ‘gentle images’ and ‘gentle fantasies’ of the 2-carbon phenethylamines. This is the works. There are visuals, and there are interpretive problems with knowing just where you really are. The place where nothing makes sense, and yet everything makes sense. I have just slept for a few hours, and now I am awake and it has been eighteen hours, and there is a lot still going on, although I have a relaxed, good feeling. Anyone who uses this had better have 24 hours at their disposal.”
(with 2.4 mg) “Here I am at the sixth hour, and I am still roaring along at a full plus three. I have established that this material is neither anti-erotic nor anorexic. The body is very comfortable, and so is the mind. There is an interesting aspect, perhaps peculiar only to this experiment and under these conditions. With my eyes closed the fantasy is a completely dark screen, lovely and seductive, subtle, and yet light must be deliberately brought in. This is not in any way negative for being in the dark, but is just unusual. I will have to try this in the daylight next time, to see what the eyes-closed brings to the mind-screen. At 24 hours, I have found that my sleep was not too great. My dreams were tight, and I kept defending against trouble; the nervous system was too alert. I was in a good humor, though, and I still am. This is excellent stuff, but start early in the day.”
EXTENSIONS AND COMMENTARY: It is clear that the three halo-amphetamine derivatives, , and DOC, are all pretty much of the same potency. And all of them very long lived. The difference between the various halogen atoms was brought up under the discussion. DOC is clearly a long-lasting, dyed-in-the-wool psychedelic.
In the making of this, by the procedures that have been followed in Canada, there are two chemical intermediates which might, some day, be looked at as potential psychedelics under their own colors. Reduction of the compound that is called in this Book II (2,5-dimethoxy-4-nitroamphetamine hydrochloride) with Pd/charcoal and hydrogen, gives the 4-amino derivative. This is 2,5-dimethoxy-4-aminoamphetamine dihydrochloride, , which melts at 248–250 °C. And the reduction of an oxime intermediate gives rise to the acetamido analogue, 2,5-dimethoxy-4-acetamidoamphetamine hydrochloride, , with a mp of 249–250 °C. Neither compound has been tasted, but someday this omission will be corrected. DOA and DOAA have a sinister ring to them, however, and some changes of terminology might be needed. DOA, in the coroner’s vocabulary, means Dead-On-Arrival. But then, AMA (the American Medical Association) just happens to also mean (in the jargon of emergency medicine) Against-Medical-Advice. Everything averages out, somehow. Remember that the amyl homolog (amyl at the 4-position) follows the 4-letter convention of all of the homologues, and has the code name of . Thus, DOA, amino; DOAA, acetamido, and DOAM, amyl.
One must learn to keep one’s sense of humor. The immortal humorist Wavy Gravy once said, “If you can’t laugh at life, it just isn’t funny anymore.” The code name of this compound, 2,5-dimethoxy-4-chloroamphetamine is, after, all, DOC. This should certainly appeal to some physicians.
16 December 2015 · Creative Commons BY-NC-SA ·

About PiHKAL • info

This version of Book II of PiHKAL is based on the Erowid online version, originally transcribed by Simson Garfinkle and converted into HTML by Lamont Granquist. I drew also on “Tyrone Slothrop’s” (Unfinished) Review of PIHKAL to enumerate the many analogues mentioned in PiHKAL but not described at length. Many, many others have since been added.
I have tried here to expunge any artifacts introduced by the earlier transcriptions and restore the typographic niceties found in the printed edition. I’ve also made minor changes to some chemical names in line with current nomenclature practice. Typically the change is little more than expanding a prefix or setting it in italics. The errata and changes page has further details.

Cautionary Note

“At the present time, restrictive laws are in force in the United States and it is very difficult for researchers to abide by the regulations which govern efforts to obtain legal approval to do work with these compounds in human beings.
“No one who is lacking legal authorization should attempt the synthesis of any of the compounds described in these files, with the intent to give them to man. To do so is to risk legal action which might lead to the tragic ruination of a life. It should also be noted that any person anywhere who experiments on himself, or on another human being, with any of the drugs described herein, without being familiar with that drug’s action and aware of the physical and/or mental disturbance or harm it might cause, is acting irresponsibly and immorally, whether or not he is doing so within the bounds of the law.”
Alexander T. Shulgin

Copyright Notice

The copyright for Book I of PiHKAL has been reserved in all forms and it may not be distributed. Book II of PiHKAL may be distributed for non-commercial reproduction provided that the introductory information, copyright notice, cautionary notice and ordering information remain attached.

Ordering Information

PiHKAL is the extraordinary record of the authors’ years exploring the chemistry and transformational power of phenethylamines. This book belongs in the library of anyone seeking a rational, enlightened and candid perspective on psychedelic drugs.
Though Sasha and Ann have put Book II of PiHKAL in the public domain, available to anyone, I strongly encourage you to buy a copy. We owe them — and there’s still nothing quite like holding a real book in your hands.
PiHKAL (ISBN 0-9630096-0-5) is available for US$24.50 (plus $10 domestic first-class shipping) from Transform Press.
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