Pharmacology

The Harlem Globetrotters had very little to worry about. After all, they had won 2,499 straight exhibition games against their foils, the Washington Generals. What could possibly go wrong? 

Cigarette smoking is bad because it's nicotine that is addictive but it is the hundreds of carcinogens in smoke that kills people. They are a deadly combination. For that reason, advocates often promote harm reduction techniques while smoking cessation happens - gums, patches and e-cigarettes all replacement the nicotine with the cigarette smoke.

What is happening in the brain? It's a lot like codeine.

According to new research in rat models, nicotine use over time increases the speed that codeine is converted into morphine within the brain, by increasing the amount of a specific enzyme. It appears smokers' brains are being primed for a bigger buzz from this common pain killer - which could put them at a higher risk for addiction, and possibly even overdose.

For hundreds of millions of people around the world, chewing betel nut produces a cheap, quick high but also raises the risk of addiction and oral cancer.

The betel nut, a seed of the areca palm, is grown and used throughout India, parts of China and much of Southeast Asia, including Indonesia and most of the Pacific islands. Chewing the betel quid -- a mixture of areca nut, spices and slaked lime wrapped in betel vine leaves -- has been a cultural tradition in those regions for centuries. In small doses, it creates a sense of euphoria and alertness. Prolonged use can create addiction and the World Health Organization classifies the betel nut as a carcinogen.


Earlier this week, former National Basketball Association star Lamar Odom was found unconscious in a Nevada brothel, after taking what the owner said was a large quantity of “herbal Viagra.” He is said to be near death at this time.

It may be little consolation for his family and friends, but this tragic development can serve as a cautionary tale for the American public, which has been systematically been fed lie after lie about the benefits of dietary supplements.

Thanks to the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) of 1994, courtesy of Senators Orrin Hatch (R, UT) and Tom Harkin (D, IA), so-called dietary supplements have been given a special niche. 

Biologists have developed a nonsurgical method to deliver long-term contraception to both male and female animals with a single shot - but only in mice.-

The road map is to as an alternative to spaying and neutering feral animals.

The approach was developed in the lab of Bruce Hay, professor of biology and biological engineering at Caltech, who leveraged work conducted in recent years by David Baltimore and others showing that an adeno-associated virus (AAV)--a small, harmless virus that is unable to replicate on its own, that has been useful in gene-therapy trials--can be used to deliver sequences of DNA to muscle cells, causing them to produce specific antibodies that are known to fight infectious diseases, such as HIV, malaria, and hepatitis C. 

OK, so I'm a 62-year old moron. Like *you're* so perfect?  This probably explains why I couldn't pass on this one. 

The word "green" has become so ubiquitous that it has become a parody of itself. Everything is green! Especially the vast amounts of green paper, which portrays formers presidents. Which is the type of green that those who sell you green stuff are lining their pockets with. 

It has gone way past crazy. Like green garbage bags:

Although they claim that their bags are made from recycled Winnebagos, I'm suspicious.

Hormonal treatments administered as part of the procedures for sex reassignment have well-known and well-documented effects on the secondary sexual characteristics of the adult body, shifting a recipient's physical appearance to that of the opposite sex.

New research published in the current issue of Biological Psychiatry indicates that these hormonal treatments also alter brain chemistry.

Researchers at the Medical University of Vienna, led by senior authors Dr. Siegfried Kasper and Dr. Rupert Lanzenberger, show that administration of the male hormone testosterone in female-to-male transsexuals raises brain levels of SERT, the protein that transports the chemical messenger serotonin into nerve cells.

The human organism is composed of numerous types of molecules, both simple and complex, and all fundamental processes in a living body occur in water solutions. Therefore, for a drug to work, it must dissolve in body liquids, which are primarily water.

Polymorphism of solid substances, a well-known problem of drug delivery, is the ability of solid drugs to form several different crystal structures (polymorphs). Polymorphs may differ in properties like biological activity, and in addition, their formation is difficult to control.

It's a lovely narrative. Modern medicine fails, but ancient Chinese medicine comes to the rescue!

The only problem is that it is completely false. But you wouldn't know that from reading the news. Many in the press are telling their own story, facts be damned.

Everyone knows that exercise improves health, and ongoing research continues to uncover increasingly detailed information on its benefits for metabolism, circulation, and improved functioning of organs such as the heart, brain, and liver. With this knowledge in hand, scientists may be better equipped to develop "exercise pills" that could mimic at least some of the beneficial effects of physical exercise on the body.

A review of current development efforts in Trends in Pharmacological Sciences, ponders whether such pills will achieve their potential therapeutic impact, at least in the near future.