| [[Image:|300px| ]]|
Albert Hofmann in 1993
|Data 2:|| January 11 1906|
|Data 3 (data hidden if data3 empty or not defined):|| April 29 2008 (aged 102)|
Burg im Leimental, Switzerland
Albert Hofmann (January 11 1906 – April 29 2008) was a Swiss scientist best known for having been the first to synthesize, ingest and learn of the psychedelic effects of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD). Hofmann authored more than 100 scientific articles and wrote a number of books, including LSD: My Problem Child. On January 11 2006, Hofmann became a centenarian, and the occasion of his 100th birthday was the focus of an international symposium on LSD.
Hofmann was born in Baden, Switzerland, and studied chemistry at the University of Zürich. His main interest was the chemistry of plants and animals, and he later conducted important research regarding the chemical structure of the common animal substance chitin, for which he received his doctorate.
Discovery of LSD
Hofmann joined the pharmaceutical-chemical department of Sandoz Laboratories (now Novartis), located in Basel as a co-worker with professor Arthur Stoll, founder and director of the pharmaceutical department . He began studying the medicinal plant squill and the fungus ergot as part of a program to purify and synthesize active constituents for use as pharmaceuticals where his main contribution was to elucidate the chemical structure of the common nucleus of Scilla glycosides(an active principal of Mediterranean Squill) . While researching lysergic acid derivatives, Hofmann first synthesized LSD-25 in 1938, the main intention of the synthesis however was to obtain a respiratory and circulatory stimulant (an analeptic). It was set aside for five years, until April 16 1943, when Hofmann decided to take another look at it. While re-synthesizing LSD, he accidentally absorbed a small quantity through his fingertips  and serendipitously discovered its powerful effects before his bicycle ride home. Three days later, on April 19, Hofmann deliberately consumed 250 micrograms of LSD. This was followed by a series of self-experiments conducted by Hofmann and his colleagues. He first wrote about these experiments on April 19 of that year stating dizziness and a desire to laugh to more intense hallucinogenic sensations. 
Hofmann became director of the natural products department at Sandoz and went on studying hallucinogenic substances found in Mexican mushrooms and other plants used by the aboriginal people. This led to the synthesis of psilocybin, the active agent of many "magic mushrooms." Hofmann also became interested in the seeds of the Mexican morning glory species Rivea corymbosa, the seeds of which are called Ololiuhqui by the natives. He was surprised to find the active compound of Ololiuhqui, ergine (lysergic acid amide), to be closely related to LSD.
In 1962, he and his wife Anita traveled to southern Mexico to search for the plant "Ska Maria Pastora" (Leaves of Mary the Shepherdess), later known as Salvia divinorum. He was able to obtain samples of this plant but never succeeded in identifying its active compound which has since been identified as the diterpenoid Salvinorin A.
In 1963, Hofmann attended the annual convention of the World Academy of Arts and Sciences (WAAS) in Stockholm.
Hofmann called LSD "medicine for the soul" and was frustrated by the worldwide prohibition that has pushed it underground. "It was used very successfully for 10 years in psychoanalysis," he said, adding that the drug was hijacked by the youth movement of the 1960s and then unfairly demonized by the establishment that the movement opposed. He conceded that LSD can be dangerous in the wrong hands.
In December 2007, Swiss medical authorities permitted a psychotherapist to perform psychotherapeutic experiments with patients who suffer from terminal stage cancer and other deadly diseases. Although not yet started, these experiments will represent the first study of the therapeutic effects of LSD on humans in 35 years, as other studies have focused on the drug's effects on consciousness and body. Hofmann supported the study, and continued to believe in the therapeutic benefits of LSD.
Albert Hofmann's autobiographical account of his experience with the hallucinogen is LSD: My Problem Child. Hofmann also co-authored The Road to Eleusis: Unveiling the Secret of the Mysteries (Hermes Press, 1998, North Atlantic Books, 2008), a collaborative effort with mycologist R. Gordon Wasson, and classical scholars Carl Ruck and Blaise Staples, which reveals the secret mystic elixir that is at the heart of the Eleusinian Mysteries and, therefore, fundamental to the development of Western civilization. Hofmann further describes the relevance of the Eleusinian Mysteries for today's world, and the application of psychedelic experience to the study of metaphysics, in essays published in Entheogens and the Future of Religion, (Council on Spiritual Practices, San Francisco, 1999); and discusses his relationship with LSD provocateur Timothy Leary in Outside Looking In (Park Street Press, Rochester, VT, 1999).
- ↑ Albert Hofmann. Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies. Retrieved on 2008-04-29.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Obituary: Albert Hofmann, LSD inventor. Daily Telegraph. Retrieved on 2008-04-29.
- ↑ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7374846.stm
- ↑ Bleidt, Barry; Michael Montagne (1996). Clinical Research in Pharmaceutical Development. Informa Health Care, 36, 42-43. ISBN 0824797450.
- ↑ New York Times article.
- ↑ The comeback of LSD - swissinfo.ch.
- ↑ World Psychedelic Forum.
- ↑ Albert Hofmann, the Father of LSD, Dies at 102. Retrieved on 2008-04-30.
- ↑ LSD inventor Albert Hofmann dies aged 102. Retrieved on 2008-04-30.
- ↑ Albert Hofmann, Obituary, Economist.com. Retrieved on 2008-05-08.
- Albert Hofmann Foundation
- Albert Hofmann Book of Remembrance
- Albert Hofmann (NNDB)
- Erowid: Albert Hofmann Vault
- MAPS ("Stanislav Grof interviews Dr. Albert Hofmann")af:Albert Hofmann
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