Following "the Roots" of Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa)

The Evolution of an Enhancer from a Traditional Use to Increase Work and Productivity in Southeast Asia to a Recreational Psychoactive Drug in Western Countries

Eduardo Cinosi, Giovanni Martinotti, Pierluigi Simonato, Darshan Singh, Z. Demetrovics, Andres Roman-Urrestarazu, Francesco Saverio Bersani, Balasingam Vicknasingam, Giulia Piazzon, Jih Heng Li, Wen Jing Yu, Máté Kapitány-Fövény, J. Farkas, Massimo Di Giannantonio, Ornella Corazza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

41 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The use of substances to enhance human abilities is a constant and cross-cultural feature in the evolution of humanity. Although much has changed over time, the availability on the Internet, often supported by misleading marketing strategies, has made their use even more likely and risky. This paper will explore the case of Mitragyna speciosa Korth. (kratom), a tropical tree used traditionally to combat fatigue and improve work productivity among farm populations in Southeast Asia, which has recently become popular as novel psychoactive substance in Western countries. Specifically, it (i) reviews the state of the art on kratom pharmacology and identification; (ii) provides a comprehensive overview of kratom use cross-culturally; (iii) explores the subjective experiences of users; (iv) identifies potential risks and side-effects related to its consumption. Finally, it concludes that the use of kratom is not negligible, especially for self-medication, and more clinical, pharmacological, and socioanthropological studies as well as a better international collaboration are needed to tackle this marginally explored phenomenon.

Original languageEnglish
Article number968786
JournalBioMed Research International
Volume2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Fingerprint

Mitragyna
Southeastern Asia
Psychotropic Drugs
Street Drugs
Farms
Marketing
Productivity
Availability
Fatigue of materials
Internet
Pharmacology
Self Medication
Fatigue
Population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)

Cite this

Following "the Roots" of Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) : The Evolution of an Enhancer from a Traditional Use to Increase Work and Productivity in Southeast Asia to a Recreational Psychoactive Drug in Western Countries. / Cinosi, Eduardo; Martinotti, Giovanni; Simonato, Pierluigi; Singh, Darshan; Demetrovics, Z.; Roman-Urrestarazu, Andres; Bersani, Francesco Saverio; Vicknasingam, Balasingam; Piazzon, Giulia; Li, Jih Heng; Yu, Wen Jing; Kapitány-Fövény, Máté; Farkas, J.; Di Giannantonio, Massimo; Corazza, Ornella.

In: BioMed Research International, Vol. 2015, 968786, 2015.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Cinosi, E, Martinotti, G, Simonato, P, Singh, D, Demetrovics, Z, Roman-Urrestarazu, A, Bersani, FS, Vicknasingam, B, Piazzon, G, Li, JH, Yu, WJ, Kapitány-Fövény, M, Farkas, J, Di Giannantonio, M & Corazza, O 2015, 'Following "the Roots" of Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa): The Evolution of an Enhancer from a Traditional Use to Increase Work and Productivity in Southeast Asia to a Recreational Psychoactive Drug in Western Countries', BioMed Research International, vol. 2015, 968786. https://doi.org/10.1155/2015/968786
Cinosi, Eduardo ; Martinotti, Giovanni ; Simonato, Pierluigi ; Singh, Darshan ; Demetrovics, Z. ; Roman-Urrestarazu, Andres ; Bersani, Francesco Saverio ; Vicknasingam, Balasingam ; Piazzon, Giulia ; Li, Jih Heng ; Yu, Wen Jing ; Kapitány-Fövény, Máté ; Farkas, J. ; Di Giannantonio, Massimo ; Corazza, Ornella. / Following "the Roots" of Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) : The Evolution of an Enhancer from a Traditional Use to Increase Work and Productivity in Southeast Asia to a Recreational Psychoactive Drug in Western Countries. In: BioMed Research International. 2015 ; Vol. 2015.
@article{753d5860a20f472aaf9a6ed2dd632e1f,
title = "Following {"}the Roots{"} of Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa): The Evolution of an Enhancer from a Traditional Use to Increase Work and Productivity in Southeast Asia to a Recreational Psychoactive Drug in Western Countries",
abstract = "The use of substances to enhance human abilities is a constant and cross-cultural feature in the evolution of humanity. Although much has changed over time, the availability on the Internet, often supported by misleading marketing strategies, has made their use even more likely and risky. This paper will explore the case of Mitragyna speciosa Korth. (kratom), a tropical tree used traditionally to combat fatigue and improve work productivity among farm populations in Southeast Asia, which has recently become popular as novel psychoactive substance in Western countries. Specifically, it (i) reviews the state of the art on kratom pharmacology and identification; (ii) provides a comprehensive overview of kratom use cross-culturally; (iii) explores the subjective experiences of users; (iv) identifies potential risks and side-effects related to its consumption. Finally, it concludes that the use of kratom is not negligible, especially for self-medication, and more clinical, pharmacological, and socioanthropological studies as well as a better international collaboration are needed to tackle this marginally explored phenomenon.",
author = "Eduardo Cinosi and Giovanni Martinotti and Pierluigi Simonato and Darshan Singh and Z. Demetrovics and Andres Roman-Urrestarazu and Bersani, {Francesco Saverio} and Balasingam Vicknasingam and Giulia Piazzon and Li, {Jih Heng} and Yu, {Wen Jing} and M{\'a}t{\'e} Kapit{\'a}ny-F{\"o}v{\'e}ny and J. Farkas and {Di Giannantonio}, Massimo and Ornella Corazza",
year = "2015",
doi = "10.1155/2015/968786",
language = "English",
volume = "2015",
journal = "BioMed Research International",
issn = "2314-6133",
publisher = "Hindawi Publishing Corporation",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Following "the Roots" of Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa)

T2 - The Evolution of an Enhancer from a Traditional Use to Increase Work and Productivity in Southeast Asia to a Recreational Psychoactive Drug in Western Countries

AU - Cinosi, Eduardo

AU - Martinotti, Giovanni

AU - Simonato, Pierluigi

AU - Singh, Darshan

AU - Demetrovics, Z.

AU - Roman-Urrestarazu, Andres

AU - Bersani, Francesco Saverio

AU - Vicknasingam, Balasingam

AU - Piazzon, Giulia

AU - Li, Jih Heng

AU - Yu, Wen Jing

AU - Kapitány-Fövény, Máté

AU - Farkas, J.

AU - Di Giannantonio, Massimo

AU - Corazza, Ornella

PY - 2015

Y1 - 2015

N2 - The use of substances to enhance human abilities is a constant and cross-cultural feature in the evolution of humanity. Although much has changed over time, the availability on the Internet, often supported by misleading marketing strategies, has made their use even more likely and risky. This paper will explore the case of Mitragyna speciosa Korth. (kratom), a tropical tree used traditionally to combat fatigue and improve work productivity among farm populations in Southeast Asia, which has recently become popular as novel psychoactive substance in Western countries. Specifically, it (i) reviews the state of the art on kratom pharmacology and identification; (ii) provides a comprehensive overview of kratom use cross-culturally; (iii) explores the subjective experiences of users; (iv) identifies potential risks and side-effects related to its consumption. Finally, it concludes that the use of kratom is not negligible, especially for self-medication, and more clinical, pharmacological, and socioanthropological studies as well as a better international collaboration are needed to tackle this marginally explored phenomenon.

AB - The use of substances to enhance human abilities is a constant and cross-cultural feature in the evolution of humanity. Although much has changed over time, the availability on the Internet, often supported by misleading marketing strategies, has made their use even more likely and risky. This paper will explore the case of Mitragyna speciosa Korth. (kratom), a tropical tree used traditionally to combat fatigue and improve work productivity among farm populations in Southeast Asia, which has recently become popular as novel psychoactive substance in Western countries. Specifically, it (i) reviews the state of the art on kratom pharmacology and identification; (ii) provides a comprehensive overview of kratom use cross-culturally; (iii) explores the subjective experiences of users; (iv) identifies potential risks and side-effects related to its consumption. Finally, it concludes that the use of kratom is not negligible, especially for self-medication, and more clinical, pharmacological, and socioanthropological studies as well as a better international collaboration are needed to tackle this marginally explored phenomenon.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84948469384&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84948469384&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1155/2015/968786

DO - 10.1155/2015/968786

M3 - Article

VL - 2015

JO - BioMed Research International

JF - BioMed Research International

SN - 2314-6133

M1 - 968786

ER -