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  1. trashbird
    Moderator, please move this to news...I can't find the "report" button...

    Here's an article from newscientist about antibodies engineered to bind to phenelthylamines...they inject you with antibodies, and theoretically, your body recognizes amphetamines or ecstasy as a pathogen and attacks it, so you can't get high very easily...is my understanding of it. There's a link to the actual patent on the page as well...

    http://technology.newscientist.com/article/dn13474-invention-antiecstasy-antibodies.html

    here's the text...

    Anti-ecstasy antibodies

    In recent years, crystal meth (methamphetamine) and ecstasy (MDMA) have become some of America's top problem drugs. Meth can cause severe problems in the cardiovascular and central nervous systems. Furthermore, because there is no way to remove the drug from the body, therapies tend to focus on treating its side-effects.

    But antibodies that bind to methamphetamines and methamphetamine-like compounds to effectively remove them from the bloodstream could change that. Michael Owens, director of the Center for Alcohol and Drug Abuse at the University of Arkansas, US, and colleagues claim to have developed a way to generate them.

    The team have not yet tested the antibodies in humans, only in rats, but they say that a single injection can reduce the level of drug within the bloodstream for several days. By binding to drug molecules, the antibodies prevent them from reaching tissues like the heart and brain, and mark the compounds for clean up by the body.

    Owens says that his team's antibodies bind to many drugs from the same chemical "family". Cocaine and nicotine are single, specific compounds but methamphetamines share a basic chemical skeleton with many other drugs. So-called "designer drugs" are made by modifying this skeleton to create specific effects. The team say their therapy works for meth, amphetamines and ecstasy.

Comments

  1. RaverHippie
    I just thought of a worst-case scenario after hearing this. If scientists developed a vaccine to make the human body create these antibodies on it's own, instead of it being a temporary injection. Then this vaccine being mandatory....what a nightmare...
  2. AntiAimer
    This is sad, they can make antibodies for drugs but yet, AIDS(HIV) and other diseases run rampant.
  3. mr. nawtynuff
    Seriously, it's not even a question which is killing more people.
    I am appalled with the United States governments perpetually escalating effort to reduce our liberties and control our lives!!
  4. Paracelsus
    To be realistic, these "vaccines" will never be obligatorily given to newborns. Amphetamines are used for ADD/ADHD, obesity/appetite suppression, and treatment-resistant depression. Even cocaine vaccines, which are already in experimental use, are known to render medically used *caines inactive as well. This danger is even more significant with smaller molecules such as amphetamines. Unless the vaccine is very specific (which it is not, because it targets both meth and MDMA), there is a huge potential for the vaccine blocking many medications and possibly even necessary substances like neurotransmitters (norepinephrine, dopamine) or amino acids (phenylalanine, tyrosine, dopa).

    These vaccines will most likely be used for "hopeless" cases of amphetamine addiction.
  5. Expat98
    At first this technology seemed to me like pure evil. But thinking about it more, I do see one potentially legitimate use for it. Suppose that somebody is hooked on meth and wants to get off. Maybe they can go a few days without using it, but they know that sooner or later they're going to have a moment of weakness and get high again on an impulse. So they give themselves a shot of these antibodies every few days to prevent themselves from getting high. That way they don't start the cycle all over again, and eventually they find that the insatiable craving for meth starts to decline (hopefully).

    So maybe there is a legitimate use for these antibodies if someone wants to VOLUNTARILY take them. But the disturbing thing is that the people who invented this drug seem to be contemplating FORCED use of these antibodies. The patent application which is linked to in the article says the following:

    The part in bold indicates that the person who has been injected with the antibodies would be trying to take some other substance (e.g., minus isomers of meth or MDMA, or compounds like ephedrine/pseudoephedrine) in order to neutralize the antibodies. Now why would somebody be trying to neutralize the antibodies unless he had been injected with them AGAINST HIS OWN WILL?

    That's scary shit!
  6. Laudaphun
    I'll second that, we are more concerned with fighting with each other (waging war) and against drugs than we are with fighting virus and disease...
  7. AquafinaOrbit
    Personally I take this as good news. Though I have nothing against these drugs there are times when people want to change their lives and by giving them a chance to undo some lingering effects these drugs may have they are really going to help some people.
  8. jazzmetalguitar
    This is great news if the idea is properly implemented. This technically eliminates the addiction potential of methamphetamine, taking away one argument from the prohibitionist's side.
  9. truth
    SWIM will take the Meth shot. But not the MDMA one. SWIM doesn't care for meth at all. SWIM would be happy to never feel the meth feeling
  10. Pondlife
    But the problem is that the antibodies produced by this "vaccine" are not specific enough to bind to just methamphetamine; they also bind to other drugs that look like meth, including MDMA. It also means that they might also bind to other currently unknown amphetamine-like drugs that are developed in the future.
  11. truth

    hmm interesting SWIM could see them making this for all drugs and injecting everyone. that would be crazy
  12. jazzmetalguitar
    If SWIM can't put in his own body what HE wants, then he will not have put in his body what THEY want. SWIM will take death before an active and forceful reduction of rights is put in his face.
  13. Expat98
    A related news article. Apparently this is a fairly active area of research.

    ***

    Medical Drugs Proving Successful in Treating Addiction, Experts Said

    By Whitney Blair Wyckoff, CQ HEALTHBEAT NEWS

    July 31, 2008

    Growing evidence has shown that vaccines and antibody medications could prove effective at treating drug and nicotine addiction, said scientists at a Capitol Hill briefing.

    Research in this field is encouraging — there have been successful animal trials and a few promising human trials — but studies would progress faster if pharmaceutical companies were more invested, they said during Tuesday’s briefing sponsored by the Friends of the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

    Since drugs to treat addiction often target a small sector of the population, drug companies tend to shy away from investments in this area, they said, the exception being drugs that address tobacco addiction.

    People who are addicted to drugs or tobacco have such a strong memory association with the positive effects they feel when using drugs that it inhibits their abilities to control their urge for another fix. Vaccines and antibody medications would make the memory association less powerful because when administered, they make it more difficult to achieve the desired high, said Nora D. Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

    Volkow said the goal of the medicines is to stimulate a response from the immune system so the body fights off the drug as if it were a disease. Vaccines work by triggering the body to produce antibodies to destroy drug molecules.

    “If you can learn that the drug is no longer desirable, you can decrease the effect on that memory,” Volkow said. Vaccine test subjects take time to develop the antibodies, so a vaccine is unlikely to throw the body into extreme withdrawal, said researchers.

    S. Michael Owens, professor and director of the University of Arkansas’ drug research center and chief scientific officer of InterveXion Therapeutics LLC, said antibody medications he is working on to treat methamphetamine would have an immediate effect because the body wouldn’t need time to develop antibodies itself.

    But such medicines are not a “silver bullet,” Owens stressed.

    “This is intended for individuals who are interested in going into a treatment program,” he said. “I don’t see any of these drugs standing alone.”

    ---

    http://www.cqpolitics.com/wmspage.cfm?docid=hbnews-000002931523
  14. Greenport
    If such antibodies destroyed other phenethylamine and related substances within the body, we'd likely become zombies. Phenethylamine is the basis of our feeling of love - if we were no longer to produce it would we no longer be able to experience such a feeling?

    What if we find out down the line that our body actually does produce small amounts of amphetamines and the like in order to regulate body functions? Would inhibiting their creation affect our ability to change mood and energy naturally? Or god forbid it messes up the way dopamine and other such compounds are handled in the body. It could really fuck somebody up.

    SwiM thinks these antibodies shouldn't exist, and they should lock all information about them in a safe with a code that nobody knows of. She don't like em.
  15. Dexyfiend
    Sounds pretty fucked up to SWIM
  16. Paracelsus
    That's what extensive animal testing followed by careful human testing are for. Otherwise, this concern could be voiced for any new medical treatment.

    I think that most people commenting are making this out to be way more diabolical than it really is. As even the article says, these "vaccines" worked for a couple of days, allowing the body to attack certain molecules. After they are refined to target specific substances with high accuracy, they could probably be used as an aid in addiction recovery - it would be a shot every couple of days to virtually eliminate the possibility of relapse. And even the point at which human testing starts, these vaccines are still far away from widespread approval.
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