How is the drug PCP made

PhencyclidineDrug groupsNMDA antagonists Phencyclidine (PCP, "Angel Dust") is an active ingredient from the group of NMDA antagonists which, like the structurally and pharmacologically related ketamine, was developed as an anesthetic. It has psychotropic and hallucinogenic properties and is no longer used medicinally. Phencyclidine has been misused as a hallucinogen since the 1960s. It is of scientific interest as a model for schizophrenia. Due to the possible undesirable effects, improper use is not recommended.

synonymous: Phencyclidinum, PCP, Angel Dust, Stardust


Phencyclidine is not commercially available in Switzerland. Legally, it is one of the strictly controlled narcotics and is subject to the relevant legislation. However, it is not a prohibited substance. Phencyclidine is also manufactured and traded illegally.

Structure and properties

Phencyclidine (C.17H25N, Mr = 243.4 g / mol) is a phenylcyclohexylpiperidine. It was originally developed as an anesthetic (e.g. Sernylan®) and is structurally related to ketamine.


Phencyclidine has psychotropic and hallucinogenic properties. As with ketamine or dextromethorphan, the effects are based on the antagonism of an N-Methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors. PCP is more potent than ketamine and binds non-competitively to the receptor. Other drug targets have been described.

application areas

Phencyclidine is used as an intoxicant and hallucinogen. There are no established medical indications. Phencyclidine is used as a model for mental illnesses, especially schizophrenia. It can trigger positive and negative symptoms and leads to cognitive deficits.


Phencyclidine is administered orally, inhalatively or parenterally.

unwanted effects

Among other things, phencyclidine can trigger symptoms of schizophrenia and is neurotoxic. Due to the numerous possible undesirable effects, improper use is not recommended.

see also

Ketamine, dextromethorphan, NMDA antagonists

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Conflicts of Interest: None / Independent. The author has no relationships with the manufacturers and is not involved in the sale of the products mentioned.

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