Providing straightforward information pertaining to drugs, drug use & drug policy. The Grey Pages promotes drug-related literacy and advocates a system of viable and tolerant drug policies. This is my personal collection of commentaries, essays, tid-bits, and other such writings on everything ranging from drug use, drug policy and drug-myths, to drug-science, addiction, human behavior, and the workings of the human brain. I started this blog with a particular focus on opioids, and over the past year have found my interest gravitate toward the intriguing, ever-changing world of designer intoxicants (i.e. "research chemicals" or "designer drugs").

Saturday, November 20, 2010

2C-X Series

Prototypic structure of a 2C compound

2C-X Refers to a series of phenethylamine derived compounds, with psychedelic, empathogenic, or enactogenic properties. Compounds in this series share structural similarities with MDMA and other analogues of the MDxx series. Multiple 2C series compounds have been available as grey market designer drugs (research chemicals). 2C-I and 2C-B are two well known analogues of the series.

The term "2C" derives from the fact that the alkyl side chain does not contain an alpha methyl group as do other substituted phenethylamines such as those of the amphetamine family, and therefore features 2 Carbon atoms instead of 3 or more (for this reason also, 2C compounds are more properly referred to as substituted phenethylamines rather than substituted amphetamines).

The 2C series was originally synthesized by researcher Alexander Shulgin in the 1970’s and 1980’s, and had been discussed in his book “PiHKAL” (i.e. Phenethylamines I know and have loved). Shulgin’s writings are well worn within the circles of the clandestine chemist, hobbyist, and RC manufacturer.


(Referred to in drug circles as Bee's or Nexus)

2C-B is a psychoactive drug of the 2C series. It has been sold and consumed as a research chemical, and is now illegal in the US. It is often encountered in the rave/party culture, typically in the form of a powder, pressed tablet (similar to ecstasy) or gel-cap.

2C-B produces typical psychedelic and hallucinogenic effects - characterized by mild to significant changes in sensory perception, sensory processing, thought and cognition. Open or closed eye visual alterations/distortions, excitation, and a general "body-buzz" are common.

The effects are associated with its action on serotonergic neurons. 2C-B is a partial agonist or antagonist at the 5HT2A receptor, and also exhibits agonist efficacy at the 5HT2C receptor. Its effects in this case are believed to be linked to the latter; as its efficacy at the 2A subtype is minimal to non existent.


2C-I is another psychoactive compound of the 2C series. It has been sold as a research chemical throughout the US and UK, and it currently remains legal; although there is currently pending legislation attempting to ban 2C-I and other compounds of the series (on grounds of their structural similarity to the currently illicit 2C-B and 2-CT7). It is available through online vendors as its hydrochloride salt, a white, crystalline powder.

2C-I exhibits both psychedelic and enactogenic properties. Low doses are reported to produce excitation, stimulation, and minor changes in cognition, while higher doses yield hallucinogenic and empathenogenic effects - compared both to LSD, and MDMA. Its pharmacology is believed to be similar to that of other 2C compounds.


25I-NBOME is a psychoactive compound of the phenethylamine family and an analogue of 2C-I. It has been sold as an RC and produces psychedelic effects, attributed to its mode of action as a potent 5HT2A receptor agonist.

This compound is active in doses less than 1 milligram. It has appeared on blotter papers for buccal application, and has been represented as LSD at parties, raves, and rainbow festivals.

Chemically, this compound is an N-substituted derivative of the 2Cx series. Its use has very much replaced that of the traditional 2Cx compounds in jurisdictions such as the US, where the immediate 2Cx family has been outlawed.

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