New Vaccine Breakthrough in War Against Drugs

Vaccine
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A new vaccine is being developed by a group of American scientists, which can make the human brain immune to the effects of heroin and a synthetic opioid called fentanyl. Two types of the vaccine have been tested in mice and monkeys so far, with promising results.

With the new vaccine, the addict will feel no effects at all from taking the drugs for several weeks, which could be crucial in breaking a drug habit.

According to statistics, an opioid crisis is on the rise in the US as the number of drug users tripled between 2003 and 2014 and fatal overdoses tripled in the past 15 years. In 2015, drug overdoses resulted in over 50,000 deaths in the US.

There is also a rising threat of synthetic opioids like fentanyl, which are must cheaper and faster to manufacture. Fentanyl is an extremely potent pain-relieving drug, 50 times more powerful than morphine. The drug is used for anaesthesia and for relieving pain from major surgeries or cancer.

Fentanyl is better known in the US than in Europe but it is starting to make headlines as there are major concerns that it will spread across the Atlantic. Fentanyl has caused the deaths of at least 60 people in the UK over the last eight months, but this number pales in comparison to the amount of deaths caused by the drug in the US.

The most extreme example of how potent fentanyl can be is one of its variants carfentanil. It is 5,000 times stronger than heroin and is used to tranquilise elephants. It can be lethal to humans in amounts even smaller than a few grains of salt and there have been cases of human consumption, where it was used to spike heroin or cocaine.

Drug addiction is often treated with the use of a drug substitution with less potent opioids such as methadone. It doesn’t have the euphoric effect of heroin and the risk of overdose is much less, but the treatment is expensive and requires daily intake. Moreover, methadone and other opiate substitutes are still addictive, while vaccines are inexpensive and potentially much more effective.

 

2 Comments

  1. Good to see something positive about a vaccine! I’m still on the fence as to evil vaccine makers and the ignorant or complicate physicians. As an American physician for 57 years (just retired 2 years ago) I can tell you that the number of complicite physicians is very small, indeed. At any rate, the evidence has been tipping me toward some mischief in the field. As to who is ignorant and to what extent, I believe we will know more as the truth continues to come out. I am in hopes that the majority of vaccine on on the level. But I have stopped getting an annual flu injection, as has my wife, based on several factors (primarily lack of proven efficacy). However, a singular event a little over a year ago has alarmed and alerted me. Our nephew, a 68 year old former police office, was still working in a juvenile detention facility in late 2016 when he received a flu shot, followed by hospitalization 2-3 weeks later for transverse myelitis; essentially a cutting off of the spinal cord by an inflammation (in this case probably an autoimmune process) which results in paralysis. One third of these persons recover without lasting effects, but he continues to be mostly quadriplegic with no improvement since the peak after a week or two in the hospital. Fortunately no evil mind conjured this catastrophic complication, it just happened. (Should mention that their is not 100% proof that the flu shot is causal here, but the story for many such sufferers fits the pattern of occurring shortly ofter a flu shot) Transverse myelitis is very rare, is nothing new, and I doubt that the number of those afflicted following a flu shot is very large. Still, it does likely occur.

  2. Interestingly there is no mention of the potentially horrendous side effects. First, the ability to transfer drugs successfully from animals to humans is FAR less than most people believe. Further, and far more worrisome, is what happens to the person who is addicted during withdrawal? This is a HUGE question. If they want to help people, taking away the “high” could be useful but only if it is combined with a serious withdrawal program. When they talk about being physically addicted to drugs, they mean physically dependent; i.e. it can be less about the ‘high’ and more about the horrific symptoms of withdrawal. I have never used illegal drugs but was medicated for PTSD with Xanax and withdrawing from that Rx is a nightmare.

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