|Common names||Butylone, bk-MBDB, B1|
butylone (also known as β-keto-n-methylbenzodioxolylbutanamine, βk-mbdb, or b1) is a synthetic entactogen and stimulant of the phenethylamine and cathinone classes. butylone is the β-keto analog of mbdb and the substituted methylenedioxy analogue of buphedrone.
as a designer drug, it is commonly sold on the street along with ethylone as a substitute or counterfeit for mdma and methylone (all of which have collectively come to be referred to as “molly”) due to methylone’s declining availability on the research chemical market.
however, in spite of behavioral and pharmacological similarities between butylone and mdma, the observed subjective effects of both substances are not completely identical.
butylone has only a short history of human use and is reported to be less potent than its relatives methylone and ethylone as well as possessing more classic stimulant as opposed to entactogenic effects.
butylone, or β-keto-n-methylbenzodioxolylbutanamine, is a synthetic molecule of the cathinone family. cathinones are structurally similar to amphetamines in that they contain a phenethylamine core featuring a phenyl ring bound to an amino (nh2) group through an ethyl chain with an additional ethyl substitution at rα. cathinones such as butylone are alpha-methylated phenethylamines (i.e. amphetamines) but differ from them with the addition of a ketone functional group (a carbonyl group at rβ). butylone contains a methyl substitution at rn, a substitution which is shared with mdea, ethylone, 4-mec, and certain other stimulants and entactogens. additionally, butylone contains substitutions at r3 and r4 of the phenyl ring with oxygen groups. these oxygen groups are incorporated into a methylenedioxy ring through a methylene chain. butylone shares this methylenedioxy ring with mda, mdai and mdma.
butylone acts as a mixed reuptake inhibitor/releasing agent of serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. these are the neurotransmitters in charge of pleasure, reward, motivation and focus. this is done by inhibiting the reuptake and reabsorption of the neurotransmitters after they have performed their function of transmitting a neural impulse, essentially allowing them to accumulate and be reused, causing physically stimulating and euphoric effects.
in comparison to methylone, it has approximately over 4x lower affinity for the norepinephrine transporter, while its affinity for the serotonin and dopamine transporters is similar. the results of these differences in pharmacology relative to mdma is that butylone, like its close analog ethylone is less potent in terms of dose, has more balanced catecholaminergic effects relative to serotonergic, and behaves more like a reuptake inhibitor like methylphenidate than a releaser like amphetamine; however, butylone still has relatively robust releasing capabilities.