Cocaine: Chemical | Organic composition

Last modified: Thursday, 25. December 2008 - 10:02 am

Cocaine is the most potent naturally occurring stimulant. It is found as an alkaloid (nitrogen-containing organic base) in the leaves of the Erythroxylon coca trees in the Andes Mountains. Coca leaves contain 0.5-1.8% cocaine (benzoylmethylecgonine or BZ) that can be refined to nearly 100% purity. Research indicates that the plant produces cocaine to kill insects that prey on it. In humans, it is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant.

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