Pharmacology

Survey results analyzed by psychologists at The Fenway Institute, an advocacy group for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community, found that gay and bisexual boys use anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS) at rates much higher than their straight counterparts - almost 6X higher.
Middle-aged women the world over are now...chuckling.

At least I imagine they are, given the news this week that testosterone supplementation may increase the risk of heart disease.

If you already have heart disease.

Or if you’re over 65.

An analysis of routine insurance data from the Barmer GEK statutory health insurance company shows that during the years 2005 to 2012, antipsychotic prescriptions for kids in Germany increased a lot. 


Marijuana use has been involved in a sharp increase in fatal motor vehicle crashes, with rates nearly tripling since 1999. 

The prevalence of non-alcohol drugs detected in fatally injured drivers in the U.S. has been steadily rising and tripled from 1999 to 2010. Marijuana is the most commonly detected non-alcohol drug involved. 


A new study has found that concentrations of arsenic, selenium, and mercury in bighead and silver carp from the lower Illinois River aren't a health concern.

Importantly, inorganic arsenic concentrations were undetectable and concentrations of selenium in carp fillets were well below the 1.5 mg/kg threshold for restricting the number of meals, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency. The distinction between naturally occurring arsenic and arsenic from the external environment has been a problem for popular media outlets like The Dr. Oz Show, which fail to note natural sources. 


Children suffer from the consequences of maternal drug exposure during pregnancy and Cannabis is one of the most frequently used substances.

A new study was done using mice and human brain tissue to decipher the molecular basis of how the major psychoactive component from Cannabis called delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol or THC affects brain development of the unborn fetus. 


Cocaine users display worse memory performance, concentration difficulties, and attentional deficits. They have difficulties understanding the perspective of others, show less emotional empathy, find it more difficult to recognize emotions from voices, behave in a less prosocial manner in social interactions and report fewer social contacts.

So why is it the second most popular drug in Europe, after marijuana? 

Scholars at the Psychiatric Hospital of the University of Zurich say the worse emotional empathy was correlated with a smaller social network and the social cognitive deficits contribute to the development and perpetuation of cocaine addiction.


Scholars say they are closing in on how ecstasy, 3,4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine (MDMA), produces feelings of euphoria in users and in a new paper say that it might be useful in the treatment of anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.  A small study using MDMA as an adjunct to psychotherapy reported positive preliminary results.

The limitation of the new paper; these were brain images and done for a television show a year and a half before it was in a journal.

A double-blind trial has determined that tea and coffee aren't just morning pick-me-ups, they are also a memory enhancer.

That goes for carbonated drinks containing caffeine also.


With increased regulations on pharmaceutical companies, billion-dollar research that will fail 95 percent of the time and a short window to sell successful products before genetic versions and lawsuits take the revenue away, the future might be the past: it's a lot smarter to find new uses for old drugs than risk developing new ones.