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  1. Calliope
    "Bath salts," the recently popular stimulant drugs made with synthetic chemicals, may be more addictive than methamphetamine, one of the most addictive drugs of abuse, a new study on rats suggests.

    In experiments, rats worked much harder to get an additional dose of the bath-salt compound methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) than they did to get an additional dose of meth: The rats pressed a lever an average of 600 times to get the MDPV compared with an average of 60 times to get the meth.

    The study also showed that MDPV acts as a classical stimulant in rats. After taking the drug, the rats became highly active and repeatedly licked, bit and sniffed, showing the typical response to stimulants, according to the study, published Wednesday (July 10) in the journal Neuropharmacology. [In the DF archive here.]

    The findings suggest that MDPV poses an even greater risk of abuse than meth does, the researchers said.
    "MDPV is more effective than methamphetamine — it's rewarding, and more pleasurable to the animal," said study researcher Michael Taffe, a psychologist at the Scripps Research Institute.

    Although rodent studies don't always translate to humans, Taffe said "the drugs that are readily self-administered by rats tend to be the compounds that have abuse liability in humans,"

    MDPV compounds in bath salts are derived from cathinone, a stimulant ingredient also found in a recently banned plant called khat. For centuries, khat leaves have been used as a recreational drug in eastern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.

    In the 2000s, synthesized derivatives of cathinone emerged in several countries, including the United States and Canada, and were sold over-the-counter before they were banned.

    MDPV, like many other stimulants, affects three of the major neurotransmitters in the brain: dopamine, noradrenaline and serotonin. Molecules of the drug attach themselves to the proteins in the brain that clear up the excess neurotransmitters and, therefore, disrupt brain systems that control mood, pleasure, movement and cognition.

    People who have used the drug report common stimulant effects — euphoria, increased physical activity, an inability to sleep and decreased appetite — as well as a craving for more use.

    In the study, some rats received infusions of meth, while others received MDPV. The animals learned that pressing a lever would release a dose of the drug. When their supply was cut, they kept pressing the lever and were sometimes rewarded with more.

    The dose of MDPV to which rats started responding was markedly lower than that of meth, suggesting the bath-salt compound is more potent and effective in changing the rats' behavior.

    But MDPV is only one of the many derivatives of cathinone, Taffe said, and the researchers would like to become able to predict whether any newly introduced drug has high risks of toxicity or abuse.

    While designer substitute cathinone drugs are made every once in a while, not all become popular or widely used. MDPV seems to have continuous popularity, Taffe said, and based on the new findings, it likely has high abuse liability.

    "This looks like a drug which is here to stay," he said.

    By Bahar Gholipour


  1. zodetak
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    This study seems very unscientific, their simple not putting all the factors that these 2 drugs have. For example, the rats may seem to want a re-dose of MDPV more often because it may only have a half-life of like an hour. Meth is probably a bad comparison addiction wise, its half-life is 12-16 hours. The rats feel satisfied and in allot less of a "come down" less often. My take if their trying to study addiction is they need to broaden the study with other addictive drugs.
  2. Days of Daze
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    yeah, you can't really compare the two in a study like that.

    half life has a lot to do with it, shorter half life may mean it's more recreational in terms of certain drugs.

    coke has more fiending properties than meth.

    xanax has more fiending properties than valium.

  3. Euphoric
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    subjective opinion: no way.

    And as mentioned above, the effects of mdpv are far shorter lasting than meth.
  4. Basoodler
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    Do not discount the crack factor. Crack has been shown to be more destructive than cocaine even though (or because?) it has a much shorter duration. The fact that the user is put in a fiendish desperate state More often leads to a higher frequency of destructive acts.

    In terms of how quickly Mdpv and meth can take a person to rock bottom, mdpv is the clear winner. Because of that it has the potential to be more destructive in that there is less time between spells of desperate acts.. not to mention the speed that it can bring on psychotic break when smoked.

    Rats hitting those levers 60x more do show that aspect.
  5. Cid Lysergic
  6. DiabolicScheme
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    Actually meth does both and also reverses the normal process of dopamine and literally forces dopamine receptors to operate in reverse (it forces dopamine out of the storage vessels).

    MDPV has been known (in human use) to have a very strong pull just read some of the posts here. The drug is still relatively unstudied so its always possible for MDPV to be stronger than meth or have some activity that has yet to be discovered that attributes to cravings.
  7. SpatialReason
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    Well let us all consider how easy it can be to obtain said drug. Meth, while easy in the US, is still not as easy as going to a head shop when it opens and when it closes. I know. I have been there.

    I see it as being ease of access, the lower of (keyword) perceived ramifications, and many other compounding factors that makes it so easy to go overboard and end up highly addicted. The bath salts train is a fast one. It also ends like the one that derailed in Spain recently. You go too fast into danger.

    Also to contribute to the duration argument, the drug (MDPV) is stronger in my opinion without as much time spent. Your redosing potential is greater. So you feel free to do it more often. This is solely psychological and enables huge addictions to occur. At least with meth, there is far more danger in obtaining and far more commitment in time spent. Also no one will be glad to have to obtain that on a daily basis. The folks involved are scary. Breaking Bad makes a joke in my mind with the illustrious sorts you deal with in the meth community. Usually the bath salts scene just ends with a friendly Bengali standing behind the counter of a gas station with some pouches under his table. It is far too easy to not see yourself getting drugs... Hard drugs... While just buying fuel and a lottery ticket!

    Your arguments on crack do parallel. A good parallel here with another family of drugs: I want you to all think about current generation synthetic cannabinoids versus good old cannabis. Weed lasts far longer and can be just as strong. But usually it is far less potent. Why would anyone care about herbal blends then? Yet spice has this grey market (idiotic) invincibility factor for users, easy access, grand supply, ease of use, and a short lived high. You give someone a good weekend stoning session, you see 10+ redoes per day when they have nothing to do... It becomes easy to vindicate nightly usage in their own mind.

    It is that short window factor that enables huge addiction. MDPV still has commitment of time, but at least you aren't spun till the next morning and can recover some more.

    It's easy to lose people in fast, cheap, easy, short lived, novelty, and strong drugs. Compound the drug testing invalidation and what it can provide for someone on probation to get their fix... it has a very devious nature! That is something we can all agree to I'd think?

    The only thing MDPV has going for it is the fact that it takes a serious toll on overall feeling and health. Most stimulant lovers find it dirty and easily worth passing over after they feel what the bender they never meant to have through daily use. Even more quickly than most other stimulants in my own opinion. Yet some people don't listen to their own mind and body and just let the addiction go regardless of the apparent detriment.

    This series of drugs has my stamp as addictive and will adversely affect your overall quality of life. A-PVP can be thrown under that bus too. Research be damned. Our users have stated these things. I have only but to add to that sad chorus.
  8. quickiB
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    This "Theory of Addictabillity" needs to be debunked. Nothing is addictive, since there is no criteria by which to make such judgement in an objective, universally reproducible way that isn't ultimately arbitrary.

    No drug can be said to have the intinsic quality of inducing addiction because of the variation in our species, biologically, mentally, emotionally, etc. In fact, based on the definition of "drug", which is essentially a substance that modulates the body's biochemical reactions and homeostasis, a drug does not even exist until the point at which it disperses in vivo. So this idea that a powder or liquid can be intrinsically addictive is nonsense, and so is trying to establish a hierarchy of addictiveness (like drug schedules). The fact that some countries have codeine available over-the-counter demonstrates the arbitrariness of the entire concept of potential for addiction. "Drugs" are not addictive: PEOPLE are addictive TOWARDS things/behaviours.

    I want to deconstruct this idea that various things are addictive, and show rather that its only the drug in conjunction with all the sums of OUR parts, that creates "addiction", not the aggregate of the drugs specific pharmacology in isolation. The best way to turn this around is to ask, who is the object, and who is the subject in the equation: I like to take [R.O.A] _________? Grammatically, "I" should be the subject, insert the way in which it is taken (smoked), and MDPV should be the object. As well as being the grammatically correct way to phrase this sentence and ultimately our cognition by extension, it is also necessary in the metaphysical sense to establish who the subject and objects are. If it is I who takes MPDV, not the MPDV taking me (or "gripping" me in "its" addiction), then I am the one that is "addictive".

    This is important, as it influences our thinking about causation and individual agency. If you've ever heard a "Soviet Russia" joke, you know that its funny because it inverts the relationship between the subject ("you/I") and the object in a humorous, ironic way. Although to our culture this is seen to be funny, it is reflective of the culture in the Soviet Union, where people came the "subjects", and more importantly, the "objects" of the communist governments. You shoot a gun; in Soviet Russia, gun shoots YOU. Ostensibly, the raison d'être or motivating ideology of such governments was "In Soviet Russia, country/government takes care of YOU", therefore relieving people (coercively) of the need to "take care" of themselves, and less subtly, the right to self-determination predicated on personal responsibility. All of this is not to say that addiction/addictiveness is the "fault" of the person, but rather, that the inversion of the subject/object relationship shared by people/drugs to implicate drugs as causal force of addiction is fatally flawed, and damaging to individuals, the and the greater society.

    If the above assumptions are correct, then "addictive" here will mean "prone to becoming addicted" or habituated to a certain behaviour/thing to excess. In this schema, no "drug" or substance with the potential of exerting "drug-like" effects in vivo, can be though of as addictive, much less be classified in an objective hierarchy of addictiveness. Even in the absence of this fundamental grammatical/metaphysical error, the impossibility of devising a system by which all "drugs" can be objectively labelled as "addictive" must be appreciated. The solution to this misunderstanding is the old "different strokes to move the world" idea: that what you are addictive towards, or believe, is not a universal reality shared by, and applicable to, everyone. You might be addictive toward alcohol, I'm not. I am addictive towards opiates, they make you feel like crap. Neither choice is superior or objectively "right", nor more "life-affirming", or even "dangerous". If your child died from heroin, you probably believe that heroin is a/the most dangerous drug that NOBODY ELSE should [be allowed to] use.

    I would like to clarify that although, within the framework I've given here, nothing can be considered "addictive", physical dependance something that can be assessed in a broad and empirical way. Addiction is something that only happens when the "right" person runs into the "right" substance or "drug", while physical dependance/tolerance is a universal (although nominally variable) neurochemical adaptation that everyone, no matter their physical/mental composure, will inevitable develop from sustained usage. All drugs affecting the brain, and central nervous system will cause the subject to develop this physical dependance, even in the absence of mental dependance or subjective "liking".

    This article essentially said that MDPV (in relation to meth) is shorter acting, more euphoric, and potent on a per-unit basis. The only property of MDPV that is relevant here, then, is short-acting duration, since its potency doesn't really matter (most users of narcotics prefer opiates/oids like morphine/heroin to other more potent ones like fentanyl or methadone), and euphoria is a subjective quality that isn't necessarily quantifiable by arbitrary measures like lever-pushes and energetic behaviour, especially in observing subjects that cannot directly articulate their inner reactions. The fact that it is has a shorter duration makes it necessary to persistently redose to maintain initial effects, which explains why it could be more reinforcing in those who, individually, are predisposed to such an addiction. The short duration also corresponds to the short time-frame in which consistent use causes tolerance. Whether or not an unspecified person is likely to be(come) addictive towards it is an irrelevant criterion that is endlessly variable and uncertain.

    To summarize, the most this article can reliably say is that because of its short-duration and ostensibly pleasurable effects resulting from its systemic action on several neurotransmitters, MDPV is more conducive than meth to cause tolerance in the overall population (everybody). At the level of the individual, such comparisons are inconsistently variable, and therfore, irrelevent. Any attempt to compare the two substances by intrinically subjective qualifiers like "pleasureable", "addictive", or "dangerous", is ultimately impossible, and intellectually disingenuous.
  9. Basoodler
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    Hmm scientific method requires repeatable results. While it is probably problematic to prove something like addiction when your study is of individuals going person to person. A study involving large samples of a population to find a percentage of people who become addicted (or rats apparently) and compare your results of similar studies you have met the requirements of the scoentific method provided the results are within a defined margin of error.

    On a side note:

    I agree with the convenience factor. That one factor can change / lower a users stand/ards / expectations of what negative side effects are acceptable. If you lower the risk its acceptable for the quality of reward to decrease proportionally.

    Take cannabinoids as an example.. as time has passed and bans enacted they feel less and less like traditional weed. Its like the original expectation and loss of quality are non-factors in the market.
  10. nightprowler
    just thinking, but... from this quote of the atricle:
    "The rats pressed a lever an average of 600 times to get the MDPV compared with an average of 60 times to get the meth."
    isnt it possible that that this could be simply because meth has a longer lasting high in general, and a more prolonged feeling of euphoria immediately following the shot/hit, where as mdpvs euphoria goes away quite much quicker and the high doesnt last as long? this is simply my friends thought who has experienced both on enough occasions, and believes this to be true of them.
  11. DiabolicScheme
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    I get your point and it is really a good point, unfortunately science has yet to find a blood test that determines what drug patient <x> is prone to becoming addicted to; hell some of society has just begun to view drug use as a health problem rather than a criminal problem.

    For now rating drugs on a addiction scale is important to avoid falling into the hole of addiction for those who are prone to addiction (using drugs for escapism, family history of addiction, no social support, poor stress management, etc.). We can act like all drugs are not addicting because its a two factor equation but the fact is that drugs like methamphetamine/heroin have plenty of horror stories to show that people get addicted to these drugs far more often than they would say LSD or DXM (just examples).

    Sure LSD, DXM could potentially be addicting but the addiction rate for these two substances are far less than methamphetamine and heroin; certain drugs certainly have a greater chance of getting someone addicted. Obviously if you're prone to addiction you should probably refrain from drugs all together but there is obviously risk differences between certain drugs.

    To say no drug is addictive; you're essentially telling me that methamphetamine should just be treated like acetaminophen (paracetamol)in terms of addiction since no drug is "addictive" and certain vulnerabilities have to exist in the user of the drug.

    I think rating a drugs addictive qualities is very important for people to know and while it may not recognize everyone's biological differences it does have some merit to it. The fact is methamphetamine has the potential to create an addiction cycle more than say paracetamol.
  12. quickiB
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    What I was suggesting was that "addictivness" is an unhelpful concept because it only exists where the right mental/emotional factors are pre-existent, and therefore is hopelessly relative. There can't really be any thumb rule, especially since only about 10% of people who use a given drug develop a pathological pattern of use. In fact, pathological pattern or outcome of use is a much better way of describing "addiction". Addiction in and of itself is a neutral term, in terms of "morality" and potential for harm/"dangerousness".

    Regarding the meth and acetaminophen example, the comparison is not appropriate. You need to make the distinction between psychotropic and non psychotropic drugs. Non-psychotropic drugs like acetaminophen work peripherally so there's no mind-altering effects (although that has been disputed by studies that say it works on endo-cannabinoid receptors) to become "addicted" to. It reduces inflammation and fever etc. If you need it for pain, you just need it for pain. There's no physical tolerance or dependance to be concerned about.

    Methamphetamine is a psychostimulant, which has central and peripheral effects. People become addicted to meth because of its centrally acting effects, like it makes them euphoric, gives them "energy", and keeps them awake. These are all effects on the central nervous system, or the mind for all intents and purposes. Its more mundane peripheral effects are sweating, dilated pupils, jitteriness etc.

    If something makes you feel good, and lasts quite a while, are you likely to want to do it again? That depends: which "good" (upper, downer, hallucinogenic, dissociative) do you prefer, do you have mental conflicts that drive you to alter your mind, what ease of access to the drug do you have, route of administration, etc. These are all essential and completely idiosyncratic factors in WHO gets "addicted" to WHAT.

    In my case, methamphetamine and in my case, Adderall/dextroamphetamine, is not addictive (take it for ADHD). I don't subjectively enjoy its effects, I do not get euphoria from it, I have no desire to repeat or try chasing the high. For me, you could place a bottle of OTC pharmaceutical methamphetamine/amphetamine right next to a bottle of acetaminophen and I wouldn't buy either. Both are equally lacking in terms of "addictiveness" for me. The same is true for many other people, albeit for different reasons unique to themselves. Someone has to have an affinity for meth/amphetamine's specific pharmacology to be inclined towards a pathological pattern of use.

    LSD and DXM are equally "addictive" as meth, in that they are not (intrinsically) addictive at all. If they randomly lay on the ground somewhere, or no humans exist to consume it, there is no addictive quality to point out. Rather, each possesses unique effects that appeal to different niches. If you are an introspective psychonaut, you may love LSD for the novel insights and fantastical visions it inspires, and think opioids and downers are boring and a waste of time. In that case, LSD very well might be addictive for you, but the same cannot be said in an objective and general way.

    DXM may be attractive to those who like the specific effects of dissociatives, the almost complete disconnect from reality and quasi-hallucinogenic visions, astral projections, etc. The only reason you think DXM is "not as" addictive as other drugs is because you don't find it appealing, and its been normalized/socialized as a "safe", "non-addictive" over the counter drug, contained in often disgusting syrups that only the most determined of those seeking to alter their mind will pursue. Its convenient (easy to access), but its also not (suspended in sickly-tasting syrups). If you compare it in pure form to others like ketamine, nitrous oxide, PCP, etc, and subjectively like it more, than it certainly would be addictive in your case.

    I hope people see what I'm trying to say with all this. It may sound like nit-picking, but language is very important to consider when thinking/talking about drugs. Addiction, as it stands in popular discourse, is overblown, exaggerated, misinformed, and almost meaningless. By extension, it leads to meaningless comparisons of ostensibly pre-established qualities like addictiveness, or dangerousness, or moral-degeneracy, or whatever other meaningless abstract quality you want to compare.

    Also, way more people have died and continue to die annually from acetaminophen-related overdosages and toxicity. This is especially important in the case of compound analgesics that have a narcotic painkiller and acetaminophen (Vicodin, Percocet/dan, Tylenol 3, etc). It seems obvious to me that the tylenol is there specifically to kill people if they try to get "too high" from their meds. I view acetaminophen as a lot more dangerous than methamphetamine or opiates, because of its toxicity to the liver and because people often unintentionally overdose by taking it in various formulations (taking pills, then cough syrup, or compound analgesics).
  13. ketameow
    Ugh, that's disgusting. After all there have been countless reports of people becoming addicted to MDPV. There's even been a canadian Intervention episode on it or two, where teens were shooting it up. However, I do believe that MDPV isn't the cleanest drug, and there's definitely dangers of using it.....But I can't see it being MORE dangerous than meth. I am open minded though on the fact of it possibly being more addictive though.
  14. babalooj
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    quickiB, according to your logic, we also cannot apply the word "dangerous" to drugs either.
    Acetaminophen, methamphetamine, and heroin cannot be called more or less dangerous from each other, because they are not dangerous themselves, it is the specific biology of human beings that causes these things. These substances would do no danger if there were no humans around
  15. quickiB
    Re: MDPV may be more addicitve than meth

    I was not trying to say acetaminophen "is" dangerous, rather that given its ubiquity, and consequent overabundance in OTC/compound medications, that it is more dangerous than heroin or methamphetamine. Of course, that conclusion is predicated on the reality of acetaminophen's overabundance in many diverse and ostensibly innocuous medications, and the previously established idea that these drugs have no inherent or objective qualities like "dangerous", "addictive", "bad/evil", etc. Even if meth was infinitely more dangerous than acetaminophen, infinity multiplied by zero is still...zero.

    As helpful as your mock-affirmation of my previous post is, the fact is that drugs are none of these things "we" say they are. The labels they have been assigned under the veneer of public health and human good, do far more harm than good. So while it seems outrageous to say that a "drug"laying on the ground is neither addictive, dangerous, or even a "drug", there is good reason to be receptive to not dismiss it so quickly.

    I have explained myself clearly and respectfully, and I hope you can do the same. If you are feeling particularly generous, perhaps add something constructive rather than superficially refuting my more esoteric and abstract examples. Its so easy to destroy in a sound-bite that which otherwise requires a thoughtful and dispassionate response.
  16. babalooj
    Pretty much, there is no reason for you to be going way off topic on true, abstract nature of drugs. We are here discussing addiction in humans.
    So yes, perhaps we could say that, intrinsically, drugs are not addictive, dangerous, anything. But we could also say that when describing anything one chooses to describe. But for our purposes, theses "labels" are not labels, but adjectives, tools, used by humans to (at least try to) accurately describe the world around us, so it could be better understood.
  17. Crystal_Queen
    A better experiment would be to let the mice tweak for a month,
    Then stop them cold turkey..and umm.. see what they are willing to do for a hit?
    Mice prostitution, murder, stealing etc...

    Then judge how addictive it is by how much effort they put into it?
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