"Marvin, the Paranoid Android": The Case of an Alpha-PVP User in the Expanding Galaxy of NPS

Simonato Pierluigi, Bulsis Laura, Negri Attilio, Bansal Gurjeet K, Pessa Gloria, Mioni Davide, Giuseppe Borgherini, Martinotti Giovanni, Schifano Fabrizio, Giulia Perini, Corazza Ornella

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Alpha-PVP can be defined as a novel psychoactive substance (NPS)-more specifically, a novel synthetic cathinone with unpredictable stimulant effects in humans. "Marvin" arrived at a Dual Diagnosis Unit at Parco dei Tigli, Italy. He underwent a 30-day rehabilitation program to overcome his problematic Alpha-PVP use as a psychonaut. We conducted an online search to understand the properties of Alpha-PVP and its presence in scientific literature, reviewing official reports and the online drug market (e.g., fora, webpages). In the Dual Diagnosis Unit, Marvin completed the 30-day rehabilitation program that included assessments and group and individual cognitive behavioral therapy. Alpha-PVP is a synthetic cathinone with stimulant properties, available in the online market but with unpredictable effects in humans. The present case reports an important risk of psychosis in a psychonaut patient who arrived and declared its intense use before admission to our Unit. This article describes the psychopathological effects of the novel compound Alpha-PVP in a psychonaut patient. Patients attending clinics that have used Alpha-PVP pose a new challenge for traditional services of mental health and addiction.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)306-313
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Psychoactive Drugs
Issue number4
Early online date16 May 2018
Publication statusPublished - 8 Aug 2018


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