69. Dr. Christopher McCurdy and Dr. Brian Pearson on the Future of Kratom

Kratom Science Podcast
Kratom Science Podcast
69. Dr. Christopher McCurdy and Dr. Brian Pearson on the Future of Kratom

Dr. Chris McCurdy is a medicinal chemist who has done groundbreaking research on kratom since 2004, starting at the University of Mississippi. In 2017 Dr. McCurdy moved to the University of Florida College of Pharmacy where he continues his research today with an expert team of pharmacologists, unlocking the function of kratom’s many alkaloids and how they interact with our metabolism and brains. Dr. Brian Pearson is a horticulturalist, also at University of Florida, who studies kratom and other medicinal plants, as well as food, landscape, and ornamental plants. Dr. McCurdy talks about his venture into kratom science. Dr. Pearson talks about the mother plant at UF, what alkaloids do for the plant, alkaloid consistency and whether it’s regional or varying from individual tree to tree, possible standardization for a domestic kratom market, future alkaloid standards for kratom products, 7-hydroxymitragynine alone vs. the symphony orchestra of kratom alkaloids, why oxidized alkaloids may be generally harmful, and why the dietary supplements industry in general carries great risks for adulterants, and why drug development does not mean restricting the availability of the kratom product. We talk about the pathway forward to a future of kratom as a plant that can help people and make the world a better place.

Music: Risey “Memories of Thailand”
The Kratom Science Podcast is written and produced by Brian Gallagher for KratomScience.com
None of the content on this or any episode of the Kratom Science Podcast is intended as medical claims or medical advice.


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  • Chear, N. J., León, F., Sharma, A., Kanumuri, S., Zwolinski, G., Abboud, K. A., Singh, D., Restrepo, L. F., Patel, A., Hiranita, T., Ramanathan, S., Hampson, A. J., McMahon, L. R., & McCurdy, C. R. (2021). Exploring the Chemistry of Alkaloids from Malaysian Mitragyna speciosa (Kratom) and the Role of Oxindoles on Human Opioid Receptors. Journal of natural products, 84(4), 1034–1043. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.jnatprod.0c01055
  • León, F., Habib, E., Adkins, J. E., Furr, E. B., McCurdy, C. R., & Cutler, S. J. (2009). Phytochemical characterization of the leaves of Mitragyna speciosa grown in U.S.A. Natural product communications, 4(7), 907–910.
  • Lydecker, A. G., Sharma, A., McCurdy, C. R., Avery, B. A., Babu, K. M., & Boyer, E. W. (2016). Suspected Adulteration of Commercial Kratom Products with 7-Hydroxymitragynine. Journal of medical toxicology : official journal of the American College of Medical Toxicology, 12(4), 341–349. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13181-016-0588-y
  • Macko, E., Weisbach, J. A., & Douglas, B. (1972). Some observations on the pharmacology of mitragynine. Archives internationales de pharmacodynamie et de therapie, 198(1), 145–161.
  • McCurdy, C. R., & Scully, S. S. (2005). Analgesic substances derived from natural products (natureceuticals). Life sciences, 78(5), 476–484. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.lfs.2005.09.006
  • McCurdy, C. R., Sufka, K. J., Smith, G. H., Warnick, J. E., & Nieto, M. J. (2006). Antinociceptive profile of salvinorin A, a structurally unique kappa opioid receptor agonist. Pharmacology, biochemistry, and behavior, 83(1), 109–113. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pbb.2005.12.011
  • Roth, B. L., Baner, K., Westkaemper, R., Siebert, D., Rice, K. C., Steinberg, S., Ernsberger, P., & Rothman, R. B. (2002). Salvinorin A: a potent naturally occurring nonnitrogenous kappa opioid selective agonist. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 99(18), 11934–11939. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.182234399
  • Zhang, M., Sharma, A., León, F., Avery, B., Kjelgren, R., McCurdy, C. R., & Pearson, B. J. (2020). Effects of Nutrient Fertility on Growth and Alkaloidal Content in Mitragyna speciosa (Kratom). Frontiers in plant science, 11, 597696. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2020.597696


2 thoughts on “69. Dr. Christopher McCurdy and Dr. Brian Pearson on the Future of Kratom”

  1. Super informative! A REAL resource about the Kratom product and underlying Mitragynine alkaloid. Thank you to all of you for putting this resource together!

  2. MD’s office was closed, yesterday afternoon, Fri May 6th, 2022. A few doors over there’s a shop selling Kratom (corner of Airport Freeway/Story Rd 75062). Since the doc wasn’t “in” (thus no chance for a prescription) but the K store was open, I stopped and shopped.

    Purchased “Red Label” Kratom. Why not try it? My first try was 1 tsp K-powder in a smoothie, wow?! Great relief from generalized body aches and pain. After about 15-20 mins, I was surely experiencing relief I NEVER got from meds.

    This morning, Sat 5-7-22, I used 1/4 tsp, sublingually, and very fast, just a few mins, great response–truly unbelievable “for me.”

    After this morning, I am clearly on a new adventure in life. I am hoping it works. I will report on my experiences.

    Male, 68 yrs, spent the last 6 months following a Reumatologist’s advice to “Get off meds that will ruin your renal system.” MD’s alternative, is 3 acetominaphine per day and Cyclobenzaprine = agony.

    I launch into my “new” day hoping I have found a good solution to the aches and pains of aging.

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