Adonis Diaries

Archive for June 12th, 2017


In the early 1900’s Heroin was a trademarked medicine by the Bayer company

In 1874, C.R. Alder Wright became the first person to synthesize diamorphine, more commonly known as heroin, by adding two acetyl groups to the molecules.

He was an English chemistry and physics researcher at St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School in London, and sent the synthesized diamorphine to F. M. Pierce of Owens College in Manchester for analysis.

Pierce told Wright:

“Doses … were subcutaneously injected into young dogs and rabbits … with the following general results 

great prostration, fear, and sleepiness speedily following the administration, the eyes being sensitive, and pupils constrict, considerable salivation being produced in dogs, and a slight tendency to vomiting in some cases, but no actual emesis.

Respiration was at first quickened, but subsequently reduced, and the heart’s action was diminished and rendered irregular. Marked want of coordinating power over the muscular movements, and loss of power in the pelvis and hind limbs, together with a diminution of temperature in the rectum of about 4°.”

However, Wright’s compound didn’t find it’s way to the market and neither of the men gained interest among pharmaceutical companies.

Not until 23 years later when German chemist Felix Hoffmann independently re-synthesized the diamorphine. At the time Hoffmann was working in the Bayer pharmaceutical company in Elberfeld, Germany, and he did his experiment under the supervision of Heinrich Dreser.

Dreser supervised Hoffmann while making codeine, the constituent of the opium poppy which in a pharmaceutical context is similar to morphine, by acetylating morphine. The expectation was to produce a less potent and addictive medicine.

They achieved this aim, but ultimately the medicine was considered to be so effective that it was named “heroin”, derived from the German word heroischmeaning “heroic and strong.”

This made Bayer the first company to commercialize the diacetylmorphine, and market it with the “glorious” name – heroin. Bayer was producing heroin as medicine for twelve years, from 1898 to 1910, as a non-addictive morphine substitute and cough suppressant sold around the world

In 1914  the Harrison Narcotics Tax Act was passed to control the sale and distribution of diacetylmorphine and other opioids, which allowed the drug to be prescribed and sold for medical purposes.

At the conclusion of WWI in 1919, the Treaty of Versailles caused Bayer to lose part of its trademark rights to heroin. Today, heroin is the most controlled drug around the world, marked as the most physical and psychological addictive substance

Structure of heroin
Structure of heroin

Secrets of Healthy Aging: Researchers examine 300 Italian residents, all over 100 years old

Oct 25, 2016 Brad Smithfield

Remote Italian village could harbor secrets of healthy aging.

The average life expectancy in the United States is approximately 78 years old. Americans live longer, with better diets and improved health care, than ever before, but only 0.02 percent will hit the century mark.

To understand how people can live longer throughout the world, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have teamed up with colleagues at University of Rome La Sapienza to study a group of 300 citizens, all over 100 years old, living in a remote Italian village nestled between the ocean and mountains on the country’s coast. (One village is Not a good sample)

“We are the first group of researchers to be given permission to study this population in Acciaroli, Italy,” said Alan Maisel, MD, lead UC San Diego School of Medicine investigator and professor of medicine in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine.

The Acciaroli study group is known to have very low rates of heart disease and Alzheimer’s.

It favors a Mediterranean diet markedly infused with the herb rosemary. Due to the location of the village, Maisel said locals also walk long distances and hike through the mountains as part of their daily activity.

“The goal of this long-term study is to find out why this group of 300 is living so long by conducting a full genetic analysis and examining lifestyle behaviors, like diet and exercise,” said Maisel. “The results from studying the longevity of this group could be applied to our practice at UC San Diego and to patients all over the world.”

Maisel and his research team will work with their Italian counterparts to collect blood samples and distribute questionnaires to the group over the next six months.

The study will also involve tests to look at metabolomics, biomes, cognitive dysfunction and protein biomarkers for risk of heart disease, Alzheimer’s, kidney disease and cancer.

“This project will not only help to unlock some of the secrets of healthy aging, but will build closer ties with researchers across the globe, which will lead to more science and improved clinical care in our aging population,” said Salvatore DiSomma, MD, lead Italian investigator and professor of emergency medicine at University of Rome La Sapienza.

Co-authors include Nicholas Schork, Robert Rissman, Chris Benner, Tatianna Kisseleva, William Kemen, Rob Knight, Dillip Jeste, Lori Daniels, and Mohit Jain, all with UC San Diego.

Note: A few preliminary facts would have gone a long way before finalizing the analysis. As for No heart disease and Alzheimer’s, midget people don’t have these two diseases too: The blocking mechanism of growth hormone is the main factor. It would be nice to know how tall are these people in the village




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