The nonprofit Usona Institute has developed a new technique to synthesize kilograms of pharmaceutical grade psilocybin and placed this information in the public domain where it cannot be patented.

In a paper published in the journal ACS Omega, Usona scientists describe how they developed an innovative, efficient method to produce a more consistent yield and high purity of synthetic psilocybin based on the established Speeter-Anthony tryptamine synthesis approach.

Unlike previous methods of producing synthetic psilocybin, which involved a five- or six-step process, Usona’s new four-step technique described in the paper uses the reagent phosphoryl chloride instead of tetrabenzyl pyrophosphate to phosphorylate psilocin to produce psilocybin in crystal form.

Phosphoryl chloride allows for the direct phosphorylation of psilocin, whereas the use of tetrabenzyl pyrophosphate requires a tedious synthesis and isolation process with highly variable yield, as well as an additional step involving the use of a catalyst and hydrogen gas. Phosphorylation involves the chemical addition of a phosphoryl group (PO3) to an organic molecule.

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