IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


29th April, 2024 Science and Technology


Source: Hindu

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  • NCB-Gujarat ATS bust mephedrone manufacturing network in two States.
  • The operation spanning over three months, witnessed raids at three premises in two districts of Rajasthan, and one in Gujarat.


  • Mephedrone, also known by its chemical name 4-methylmethcathinone (4-MMC) or colloquially as "meow meow," is a synthetic stimulant drug belonging to the cathinone class.
  • It gained popularity as a recreational drug in the early 2000s and is known for its euphoric and stimulant effects.
  • Mephedrone is typically sold in the form of white powder, capsules, or tablets and is often used recreationally at parties, clubs, and music festivals.

Chemical Aspects

  • Mephedrone is structurally related to cathinone, a naturally occurring stimulant found in the khat plant (Catha edulis). It is chemically similar to other synthetic cathinones, such as methylone and methcathinone.
  • Mephedrone acts primarily as a releasing agent and reuptake inhibitor of the neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine in the brain.
  • This leads to increased levels of these neurotransmitters, resulting in euphoria, increased energy, and heightened sociability.
  • Mephedrone is typically administered orally, nasally (snorted), or through injection.


  • Psychological Effects: Mephedrone produces a range of subjective effects, including euphoria, increased sociability, heightened empathy, enhanced sensory perception, and increased alertness.
  • Physical Effects: Physiological effects of mephedrone can include increased heart rate, elevated blood pressure, dilated pupils, sweating, jaw clenching, and dehydration. Overdose or excessive use can lead to more severe effects such as hyperthermia, hallucinations, seizures, and cardiovascular complications.
  • Addiction and Dependence: Mephedrone has the potential for addiction and dependence, particularly among individuals who use it frequently or in high doses.
  • Health Risks: Long-term use of mephedrone may be associated with various health risks, including cardiovascular problems (such as hypertension and cardiac arrhythmias), psychiatric disorders (such as anxiety, depression, and psychosis), cognitive impairment, and damage to the liver, kidneys, and other organs.

Legal Status

  • Mephedrone and other synthetic cathinones are controlled substances under international drug control conventions, such as the United Nations Convention on Psychotropic Substances.
  • The legal status of mephedrone varies from country to country. In many jurisdictions, it is classified as a controlled substance and subject to legal restrictions on production, distribution, and possession.




Q.  Examine the socio-economic and public health implications of the increasing use of mephedrone in India. Discuss the challenges in regulating its production, distribution, and consumption, and suggest measures to address the associated risks. (250 words)