The family Myristicaceae has about 16 genera and 380 species of tropical lowland rainforest trees that are easily recognizable in field collection because of their bloodlike sap, conical crown, and nutmeg-like fruits. A very interesting feature of Myristi-caeae species are their ability to elaborate series of neuroactive indole alkaloids, because it produces neuroactive indole alkaloids, which might hold potential for the treatment of anxiety, mood disorders, and other psychological disturbances.
Such alkaloids are N, N-dimethyl tryptamine, 5-methoxy-N, N-dimethyl trypta-mine, and 2-methyl-1, 2, 3, 4-tetrahydro-p-carboline, which have been characterized from the resins of several Virola species, which is used by the witch doctors of several
tribes in the Colombian Amazon to make a particularly intoxicating snuff known as yakee.
According to Schultes, snuffing yakee produces scarily true hallucinations and an exhilarating euphoria. The subject performs prodigious feats of magic and strength because of a superhuman quality (7). About 20 species of plants classified in the family Myristicaceae are medicinal, including Myristica fragrans Houtt. (mentioned earlier), as well as a few Horsfieldia species, including Horsfieldia glabra (Bl.) Warb. Horsfieldia glabra (Bl.) Warb., or feng chui nan (Chinese), kayu anak (Indonesia), is a tree of up to 25 m tall that grows in Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and China. The leaves are oblong-lanceolate, 13.8 X 3.8 - 15 X 4.9 cm, and show 7 to 10 pairs of secondary nerves. The fruits are ovoid to elliptical, 1.5-2.5 cm, orange color, aril orange color, and completely enclose seeds. In Indonesia, the bark and leaves are used to treat intestinal disturbances. The bark is also used to heal sores and boils on probable account of arylalkanones (8).
One might set the hypothesis that intestinal disturbances, which are a common symptom in depression, could be the result of a serotonin-like mechanism because the Horsfieldia species, including Horsfieldia superba (Hk. f. et. Th.) Warb., are known to elaborate unusual series' of oxindole alkaloids, such as horsfiline (9).
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