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Ayahuasca: alkaloids, plants & analogs
assembled by Keeper of the Trout
Section 3: Part 1 :
The genus Diplopterys

See the monograph of Bronwen Gates 1982 for the most complete treatment of the genus.

Diplopterys cabrerana (Cuatrecasas) B.Gates

= Banisteriopsis cabrerana Cuatrecasas Cuatrecasas
= Banisteriopsis rusbyana sensu ethnobotanists, non (Niedenzu) Morton.

[Please note that despite how many times that the assertion appears in the literature (including within the works of Dr. R.E.Schultes & also the Missouri Botanical Garden W3TROPICOS archives), this is NOT equivalent to Banisteriopsis rusbyana (Niedenzu) Morton.

See the work of Bronwen Gates 1982 who unravelled the details of this important misidentification.

Originally the leading expert of the day, Morton, had misidentified a sterile specimen [Klug 1971] This material was then analyzed and said analysis erroneously published under the name Banisteriopsis rusbyana. Later workers operated under the assumption that this identification and synonymity was accurate. It has been repeated as fact MANY times through the literature.]

This is one of the more common ayahuasca admixtures.

Commonly called: Chagropanga, Chalipanga, Oco-yajé, Yajé-uco.

Diplopterys cabrerana has also been reported with many common names, including: amarrón chagropanga, chagrupanga, ayahuasca, cajé-uco, cají-uco chacruna, chagro-panga, chagrupanga, me-ne-ka-heé-ma, mené-kahi-ma, nyoko-buku-guda-hubea-ma, oco yagé, oco-yajé, oko -yajé, yaco-ayahuasco, yagé, yageúco, yajé and yajé agua.

[Caution: Be aware that yajé agua has several classes that are recognized by the Siona; one of the minor classes is Brunfelsia rather than Diplopterys.]

All reported analysis indicated potent to extremely potent material.


Collections have been recorded from Colombia, Ecuador, Peru & Venezuela according to (enter the species name in their search engine)

Also use the search at the NY Botanical Gardens:] Also from Bolivia according to Gates 1982

Occurs in the Colombian Putumayo; used by Mocoa in Colombia and by the Siona and Secoya in Ecuador.

Used far less commonly in Peru than in Colombia and Ecuador. Ott 1994

Reported analysis:

DMT reported in leaf at 1.46% (1.33%-1.75% estimated spectrophotometrically using different dilutions of the same material.) [It is important to note that this was an estimated value and was not determined by isolation and purification nor was it reported by other workers (using the same species but different collections so direct comparison of the work is not very meaningful). More work clearly needs to be done to determine if more material tests similarly and to get germplasm and living biomass of those clones into the hands of plant propagators dedicated to ethnobotanicals.]

Der Marderosian et al. 1968a. [Sole base present according to Der Marderosian.]

1.3% in leaves (spectrometric determination). Alkaloid content "largely DMT". (eastern Ecuador)

Der Marderosian et al. 1968b.

Poisson 1965 reported that DMT as the major base in the leaves.

Poisson found 0.64% total bases comprised of DMT; 6.4 gm total bases per kg. He recovered 18 mg of DMT from 2.8 grams of leaves. (3 leaves) [He reported β-carbolines in the stems, the major of which he believed to be harmine and smaller amounts of harmaline or 6-Methoxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine. It should be noted that the extraction route he used would have been inefficient for harmine.]

His material was collected in Peru by Claudine Friedberg.

Agurell et al. 1968a found 0.4655% in dried leaves (465.5 mg from 100 grams; 4.65 mg per gram) and 0.166% in dried stems (177 mg from 100 grams).

Agurell additionally detected traces of MMT, Bufotenine, 5-MeO-DMT and N-Methyl-H4-β-carboline in the leaves,

He reported traces of 5-MeO-DMT [0.0035% dry wt.] and N-Methyl-H4-β-carboline in the stem.

Agurell et al. 1968a
See also Agurell 1968b.

Diplopterys cabrerana [Plowman #6040; Tarapoto, "Chagro-panga"]

DMT was present at 1.58 mg per gm dry weight (SD ± 0.41) [0.158% ± 0.041) in leaf.

Traces of Bufotenine were also present.

McKenna et al. 1984a

Other Diplopterys employed

The Siona are familiar with P. viridis which is used by their neighbors the Kofan but use it only occasionally. They normally use D. cabrerana.

Two major classes of yajé agua are differentiated (by the Siona) based on their leaf size. One may prove to be another species of Diplopterys but more field work is needed.

yajé agua de pájaro: smaller of the two,
yajé agua de jaguar: the larger of the two.
    Langdon 1986