Synthetic Cathinones: Comprehensive Guide to Synthesis

Synthetic Cathinones: Comprehensive Guide to Synthesis


The chemical synthesis of cathinones is facile and usually follows a two-step process. Typically, the initial synthesis is of an α-bromoketone (from the prerequisite arylketone) followed by a nucleophilic substitution with an appropriate amine to give the corresponding freebase of the cathinone. Due to the instability of the free- base, the cathinones are conveniently isolated as their corresponding hydrochloride or hydrobromide salts. This method could be adapted for the synthesis of a wide range of cathinones as shown below.


Ephedrone (CAS: 5650-44-2, C10H13NOH, 2-(methylamino)-1-phenylpropan-1-one, methcathinone, MetCat) is a short-acting stimulant that produces effects similar to those from chewing the leaves of the Khat plant. The precursor is propiophenone CAS: 93-55-0.

Flephedrone (CAS: 7598-35-7, C10H13ClFNO, 1-(4-fluorophenyl)-2-(methylamino)propan-1-one, 4-fluoromethcathinone or 4-FMC) is a central nervous system stimulant belonging to the amphetamines and cathinones class. The precursor is 4'-fluoropropiophenone CAS: 456-03-1.

Mephedrone (CAS: 1189805-46-6, C11H15NO, 1-Propanone, 2-(methylamino)-1-(4-methylphenyl)-, 2-(Methylamino)-1-(4-methylphenyl)-1-propanone, 2-Methylamino-1-p-tolylpropane-1-one, 4MMC, Meow meow, meph). Euphoric, is widespread. Its effects have been compared to those of cocaine, methamphetamine and ecstasy. Precursor for 4-mmc synthesis is 4'-Methylpropiophenone (CAS: 5337-93-9).

Methedrone (CAS:530-54-1, C11H15NO2, para-methoxymethcathinone, 4-methoxymethcathinone, bk-PMMA, PMMC, methoxyphedrine, 4-MeOMC). A substance in the class of amphetamines and cathinones. Chemically, methedrone is closely related to para-methoxymethamphetamine (PMMA), methylone and mephedrone. Precursor for methedrone synthesis is 4'-Methoxypropiophenone (CAS: 121-97-1).

Methylone (CAS:186028-79-5, C11H13NO3, 3,4-methylenedioxy-N-methylcathinone, MDMC, βk-MDMA, M1). Methylone is a substituted cathinone analogue of MDMA and a 3,4-methylenedioxy analogue of methcathinone. Only the structural difference between methylone and MDMA is the substitution of 2 hydrogen atoms for 1 oxygen atom in the β-position of the phenethylamine nucleus, forming a ketone group. The effects may be superior to MDMA. Precursor for methylone synthesis is 3,4-methylenedioxypropiophenone (CAS: 28281-49-4).

α-Pyrrolidinopentiophenone (CAS: 14530-33-7, C15H21NO, α-pyrrolidinovalerophenone, α-PVP, O-2387, β-keto-prolintane, prolintanone, or desmethylpyrovalerone) is a synthetic stimulant of the cathinone class. Precursor for α-PVP synthesis is valerophenone (CAS: 1009-14-9).

MDPV (CAS: 687603-66-3, C16H21NO3, 3,4-Methylenedioxypyrovalerone, methylenedioxypyrovalerone) acts as a powerful stimulant and causes effects similar to those of cocaine, methylphenidate and amphetamines. Causes irresistible craving for repeated taking. Typical doses range from 5-20 mg.


As you can see at the diagrams above, the syntheses of cathinones are relatively simple. A large scale production is quite easy to arrange, so that they come out cheap to produce.

  1. R

    Cathinone synthesis

    Hello, I would be very grateful if someone could help me with the following questions: 1. How to make cathinone (just cathinone, not M-Cat or meph) ftom propiophenone, without brom? 2. What is the dosage for cathinone hydrochloride?
  2. I

    Help with A-PHP synthesis

    Hey guys, I hope everything ok ! Can someone help me with the A-PHP synthesis? People say it’s a very easy to do it through A-PVP synthesis. I have a supplier for already done 2-bromo-1-phenylhexan-1-one, Pyrrolidine, Ethyl acetate and Hydrochloric acid Should I follow the A-PVP synthesis...
  3. I

    Alpha PHP synthesis (?)

    Hello ! Does anyone know how to synthesize A-PHP? Thanks in advance
  4. GhostChemist

    Synthesis of Ephedrine Hydrochloride and Chemical Analysis

    The synthesis of Ephedrine hydrochloride is proceeding according to Scheme 1. Scheme 1 Were've carried out 3 synthesis of Ephedrine with 1, 1.5 and 2 equivalents of NaBH4 to methcathinone Starting reagents and materials for a one synthesis: 10 g of purified methcathinone hydrochloride 40-50...
  5. GhostChemist

    Synthesis of methcathinone hydrochloride from propiophenone

    Stage 1. Bromination of propiophenone The bromination of propiophenone occurs according to Scheme 1. Scheme 1 Starting reagents and materials 50 ml propiophenone 40 ml HBr (1,3 g/ml) 55 ml H2O2 35% 150 ml dichloromethane (DCM) 2000-2500 ml H2O 250 ml 5% Na2S2O3 (12.5 g and 238 ml H2O) 250...
  6. Raul Duke

    Cathinones from the plant

    Hello everyone, in my country the Gat plant (Cath/khat) is completely legal, I would love to know how to extract interesting pure cathinones from it. Thanks.
  7. G.Patton

    About Khat and Its Cathinone Nature

    What is Khat? Khat, also known as qat (Amharic: ጫት ch’at; Oromo: Jimaa, Somali: qaad, khaad, khat or chat, Arabic: القات al-qāt), is an indigenous flowering plant found in eastern and southern Africa. Khat reaches heights from 10 feet to 20 feet and its scrawny leaves resemble withered basil...
  8. C

    Does anyone know what color 2-Bromo-3',4'-(methylenedioxy)propiophenone (CAS:52190-28-0) is?

    This is very frustrating, Most Chinese suppliers sell such cathinone precursor powder in brown color, and other users tell me that it is white crystalline powder, because according to them the brown color is due to impurities, some real expert who knows can Answer my question? I don't know who...
  9. Marvin "Popcorn" Sutton

    4-MMC (mephedrone) synthesis. Complete video tutorial.

    This video represent a simple synthesis way of 4-MMC (mephedrone) in a small scale from 4'-methylpropiophenone. There is total synthesis video manual which explain everything and gives opportunity to make 4-MMC to every beginner of organic synthesis. Equipment and glassware: Round bottom...
  10. WillD

    Mephedrone synthesis (4-MMC) in NMP solvent. Large scale.

    Reaction scheme: Reagents: 2-Bromo-4'-methylpropiophenone (cas 1451-82-7) - 5 kg; n-Methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP; cas 872-50-4) - 20 L; Methyl amine 40% aq. solution (cas 74-89-5) - 8 L; Benzene - 20 L; Acetone - 30 L; Hydrochloric acid con. aq. solution (HCl 36%) ~ 1.5 L; Distilled water - 20...
  11. WillD

    4'-Methylpropiophenone iodination to 2-iodo-4'-methylpropiophenone by iodine/cooper(II) oxide. Video manual.

    Reaction scheme: Reagents: 4'-Methylpropiophenone (cas 5337-93-9) 5 kg; Сooper(II) oxide (CuO) 2.7 kg; Isopropyl alcohol (IPA) 50 l; Iodine 6.5 kg; Equipment and glassware: 100 L Batch reactor, which is equipped with drip funnel, top stirrer, thermometer, temperature control system...
  12. WillD

    4′-Methylpropiophenone bromination to 2-bromo-4'-methylpropiophenone. Large scale.

    Reaction scheme: Reagents: 4′-Methylpropiophenone (cas 5337-93-9) 1000 g; Hydrobromic acid 48% aq. 1300 g; Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) 35% 750 g; Sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3); Distilled water; Equipment and glassware: Three necked round bottom flask 5 L; Retort stand and clamp for securing...
  13. Marvin "Popcorn" Sutton

    Synthesis of synthetic cathinones

    The chemical synthesis of cathinones is facile and usually follows a two-step process. Typically, the initial synthesis is of an α-bromoketone (from the prerequisite arylketone) followed by a nucleophilic substitution with an appropriate amine to give the corresponding freebase of the cathinone...
  14. Marvin "Popcorn" Sutton

    Simple methylone synthesis (bk-MDMA)

    Methylone (3,4-Methylenedioxymethcathinone, βk-MDMA) is a synthetic substance of the cathinone class that is often compared to MDMA. This product is very popular and causes a strong euphoria and empathy. It acts as a powerful aphrodisiac, the effect of which causes an unrestrained desire to have...
  15. WillD

    2-Bromo-4'-methylpropiophenone synthesis from 4'-methylpropiophenone. Bromination in DCM or GAA.

    Reaction scheme: Reagents: 4-methylpropiophenone (cas 5337-93-9) - 1000 g; Dichloromethane (DCM) or glacial acetic acid (GAA) - 3000 ml; Bromine (Br2) - 1080g, 348 ml; Sodium bicarbonae (NaHCO3) solution; Distilled water; Magnesium sulphate (MgSO4); Equipment and glassware: Three necked...
  16. Marvin "Popcorn" Sutton

    Mephedrone (4-MMC) powder purification

    Introduction Mephedrone (4-MMC) synthesis reaction is carried out with production of some amount by-products. Also, some amount of unredacted precursor is left in the reaction mixture after reaction. It takes to purify a 4-MMC product with insufficient purity to reduce health risks. Manual As...
  17. WillD

    Alpha-PVP synthesis (1-10kg scale). Complete video tutorial.

    Introduction This topic is represented alpha-PVP synthesis way in a medium scale 1-10 kg. There are elaborated video tutorials, which are allowed to produce this substance to anybody. Also, you can find here a list of necessary equipment and reagents. Equipment and glassware: Round bottom...
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