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Identification of Kryptopyrrole in Human Urine and its Relation to Psychosis


USING the drug-induced model psychosis as a guide to urinary constituents relevant to psychotic states, LSD was administered to volunteers and their urines were monitored by paper chromatography. In this way a new, Ehrlich-positive spot isographic with bufotenin was found and subsequently observed in many psychiatric patients not given LSD. In 1961, we named this substance “mauve factor” (because of its Ehrlich reaction), suggested it was pyrrolic, and pointed out its statistical association with psychosis (not specifically schizophrenia)1. Hoffer went further, perhaps prematurely, and suggested that persons excreting mauve factor could be described as suffering from a disease called “malvaria”2. The association between mauve factor and psychosis has been confirmed3–5 and similar trends were observed by others2,6,7,9, the factor usually being present in 30–60 per cent range of psychotic patients.

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IRVINE, D., BAYNE, W., MIYASHITA, H. et al. Identification of Kryptopyrrole in Human Urine and its Relation to Psychosis. Nature 224, 811–813 (1969).

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