Ibogaine, a naturally occurring alkaloid found in the root bark of plants in the Apocynaceae family, has traditionally been used as medicine and a ritual tool in the Bwiti religion in Gabon, Africa.
Ibogaine has hallucinogenic properties and was first extracted in 1901 from the Tabernathe Iboga shrub in the African rainforest and synthesized in 1966. In 1962, it was first promoted in the West for its anti-addictive properties by Howard Lotsof, and in small doses it acts as a stimulant. Although it’s classified as a Schedule 1 drug in the U.S., it is available in varying degrees in Canada, Mexico and several European countries, and is predominantly used in treating opiate addiction and other highly addictive drugs. MindMed, a neuro-pharmaceutical company, has obtained a patent for its product called 18MC, which is a synthetically derived substance similar to ibogaine and is being used and studied for its efficacy in treating addiction.