Dimethyltryptamines are hallucinogenic serotonin-like molecules present in traditional Amerindian medicine (e.g. Ayahuasca, Virola) recently associated with cognitive gains, antidepressant effects and changes in brain areas related to attention, self-referential thought, and internal mentation. Historical and technical restrictions impaired understanding how such substances impact human brain metabolism. Here we used shotgun mass spectrometry to explore proteomic differences induced by dimethyltryptamine (5-methoxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine, 5-MeO-DMT) on human cerebral organoids. Out of the 6,728 identified proteins, 934 were found differentially expressed in 5-MeO-DMT-treated cerebral organoids. In silico systems biology analyses support 5-MeO-DMT’s anti-inflammatory effects and reveal a modulation of proteins associated with the formation of dendritic spines, including proteins involved in cellular protrusion formation, microtubule dynamics and cytoskeletal reorganization. Proteins involved in long-term potentiation were modulated in a complex manner, with significant increases in the levels of NMDAR, CaMKII and CREB, but a reduction of PKA and PKC levels. These results offer possible mechanistic insights into the neuropsychological changes caused by the ingestion of substances rich in dimethyltryptamines.
Dakic, V., Nascimento, J. M., Sartore, R. C., de Moraes Maciel, R., de Araujo, D. B., Ribeiro, S., … & Rehen, S. K. (2017). Short term changes in the proteome of human cerebral organoids induced by 5-methoxy-N, N-dimethyltryptamine. bioRxiv, 108159.
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