Fact of the Day
During the early 1900s Bayer had created a blood clotting agent. In a mad dash to at least match the discovery, Merck funded a series of experiments to create an effective vasoconstrictor. It was during this project that methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) was synthesized by Merck in Darmstadt, Germany. MDMA became known as ecstasy only recently (1970s-80s), beforehand the 1960s physiologists called it empathy. In today's black commodity market ecstasy is not necessarily MDMA anymore. Pure MDMA, like the original synthesis, is now referred to as Molly (short for molecularly pure) and street ecstasy is commonly cut with speed, heroine, crystal meth, Ketamine (Special-K/cat tranquilizer), etc.; making it almost a new club-drug medley.
Many rumors have been spread about the original synthesis. No one really knows why MDMA came from a blood clotting project, but it definitely wasn't created for the reasons spread through hearsay. Some of these include diet drugs and the more widely believed aid of the German soldiers of World War I. It is said that MDMA was developed in order to allow the troops to do a lot more and cover a lot more ground on little food. Not true.
Merck is also said to have a hand in making drugs like morphine and cocaine widespread [source].
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