Inositol, or cis-1,2,3,5-trans-4,6-cyclohexanehexol, is a cyclic polyalcohol that plays an important role as a second messenger in a cell, in the form of inositol phosphates. It is found in many foods, namely cereals with high bran content.
It is classified as a member of the vitamin B complex, though it is not considered a vitamin per se, since the human body can synthesize it.
The chemical formula of inositol is C6H12O6. There are 9 isomers, all of which are called inositol.
The inositol ring is in the chair conformation. The 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th hydroxyls are positioned equatorially to the plane of the ring, while the 2nd hydroxyl group is positioned axially to the plane of the ring.
Inositol is synthesized from G6P in two steps. First G6P is isomerized by INYNA1 to myo-inositol 1-phosphate, which is then dephosphorylated by IMPA1 to yield inositol.
It is involved in :
- cytoskeleton assembly
- nerve guidance (Epsin)
- controlling intracellular calcium (Ca2+) concentration
- maintaining membrane potential of the cell.
It is also involved in the breakdown of fats and reducing blood cholesterol.
Inositol phosphates are involved in gene expression (Wu 2003 and OShea 2003 both in Science).
Some preliminary results of studies on inositol supplements show promising results for people suffering from problems such as bulimia, panic disorder and bipolar depression.
Inositol has been found in double-blind studies to be an effective treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). It is equal in effectiveness to SSRIs and is virtually free from side effects .
- Inositol powder can be used in small proportions to cut Cocaine HCL or Methamphetamine (Crystal Meth). It has an almost identical appearance when in powder form and portrays similar qualities when heated. This, in addition to the fact that it adds almost no discernable taste or feel to either drug regardless the method of use, makes it an ideal cutting agent. Cutting either drug at any point in the distribution increases volume of the street product and increases dealer profits. However, at higher cut levels the inositol becomes somewhat noticeable in that the quality of the product is obviously diminished.