Addicted to Patent on Drugs
|Capsule of opium showing latex exuding from incision|
While this is mere imagination, researchers in Mexico’s National Institute of Psychiatry have come up with a vaccine for Heroin addiction. Heroin, one of the world’s most notorious narcotics, is an opiate drug which is extracted from Asian opium poppy seeds, which when injected intravenously, gives the user a surge of euphoria and clouded mental functioning. Following this initial euphoria, the user goes on an alternately wakeful and drowsy state.
Being a producer and transit route for illegal drugs, Mexico has been fighting the drug wars for years now. The heroin vaccine, which has been patented in the US by the Mexican researchers, works by stimulating the body’s immune system to create antibodies that bind to the drug and prevent it from reaching the brain and producing a chemical high. The vaccine has been successfully tested on mice and now the tests would be conducted on humans. This breakthrough vaccine would be a blessing for serious heroin addicts, who have not had success with the other treatments for addiction.
Scientists over the world have been trying to develop anti-addiction vaccines for drugs such as cocaine, nicotine and methamphetamines, but none have been fully developed. This is the first time that researchers have come so close to achieve success on such a treatment, and have received funds from the US Institute of Health and the Mexican government.
Though there lies a long road ahead, this would prove to be a big step if the life-saving vaccine could reach the market and provide help to millions of drug addicts.