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Kambo while relatively new to Western culture, has been the subject of more than two decades of medical research which has found that Kambo is full of peptides which are short chains of amino acids. Amino acids are often referred to as the building blocks of all human life. Examples of naturally occurring peptides in the human body include oxytocin, endorphin and insulin.

Meaning Kambo is made from the same basic ingredients that humans are, with an assortment of peptides and neuropeptides that have very specific functions in the human body including neurotransmission, pain relief, anti-inflammation, detoxification, immune system boosting, hormone balance, antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-parasitic and much more [4]. The most notable peptides found in Kambo are: 

  1. Phyllocaerulein – a neuropeptide that stimulates the adrenal cortex and pituitary gland. This compound in particular, has pain relieving effects, stimulates gut flow, stomach acid secretion, and lowers blood pressure [5], and can also bring about the sensation of feeling full. 

  2. Phyllomedusin – interacts with the receptors involved in regulating dopamine, serotonin and other neurotransmitters which play a role in controlling consciousness and behavior. In addition, contracts the gut and lowers blood pressure (by dilating blood vessels) [7,8,9,10].  

  3. Sauvagine – stimulates the adrenals and dopamine release.  Acting like a hormone, affecting the pathways involved in stress, anxiety, depression and addictive behavior.[11, 12]

  4. Dermaseptin B2 – has been shown to inhibit Cancer cell growth, reducing prostatic adenocarcinoma by 90%. It also kills the filamentous fungi that affects AIDS patients. With the emergence and spread of highly resistant pathogenic bacteria, novel antibiotics such as these are becoming critical [13].

  5. Adrenoregulin – affects the activity of important neurotransmitters and compounds (adenosine, adrenaline, and serotonin (5-HT1A) [14, 15], a powerful antibiotic, rapidly and irreversibly effective against a range of parasites. Combined with Dermaseptins and their ability to cross the blood brain barrier, it’s especially promising for conditions like Cryptoccocal meningitis in patients with late-stage HIV. It also has potential in Alzheimers, depression and addiction. 

  6. Deltorphin and Dermorphin – (delta-opioid receptor activator) and dermorphin (mu-opioid receptor activator) act as opioids to relieve pain and induce euphoria [16, 17]. Pain relieving effects, stronger than morphine without the same level of respiratory depression, tolerance potential and withdrawal symptoms. 

  7. Phyllokinin – able to lower blood pressure more effectively than other polypeptides. 

Pharmaceutical companies have made efforts to artificially re-create and patent Kambo[2], without much success. However, with increased compelling anecdotal evidence worldwide as well as found bioactive peptides researchers believe that continued research of Kambo will open a new world of natural treatments for a range of chronic conditions [3]

Research -Pharmacology



















[18] Ketler, A. (2016). Kambo: Can Poison from a Frog Fix Your Health Challenges? Collective Evolution. 

[19] Annu Tara. What is Kambo? 

[20] Thoricatha, W. (2017). Way of the Frog Medicine: Interview with Master Kambo Practitioner Simon Scott. Psychedelic Times. 

[21] KamboCleanse. Testimonials. 


Additional Resources: ​

  • Erspamer, V. et al. (1993). Pharmacological Studies of ‘Sapo’ from the Frog Phyllomedusa bicolor Skin: A Drug Used by the Peruvian Matses Indians in Shamanic Hunting Practices. Toxicon, 31, 9: 1099-1111. 

  • Gomes, M. B. (2008). Kambô, The Spirit of the Shaman.

  • Gorman, P. (2015). Sapo In My Soul.

  • Labate, B. C., de Lima, E. C. (2014). Medical Drug or Shamanic Power Plant: The Uses of Kambô in Brazil. Ponto Urbe, 15.

  • Sumpter, L. (2015). Kambô: Nature’s Vaccine For The Mind And Body.

  • Yosufzai, R., Horne, B. (2013). Peptides almost impossible to detect in testing. 

  • KamboCleanse. (2015). A Kambo Frog Sweating Poison. 

  • Psychedelic Times Staff. (2016). Four Ways Kambo Can Enhance the Effectiveness of Ayahuasca Treatments. Psychedelic Times. 



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