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Alan J. Robinson robin073 at maroon.tc.umn.edu
Thu Nov 23 11:30:20 EST 1995

On 22 Nov 1995 03:17:39 GMT, 
Kevin Spencer  <kspencer at s.psych.uiuc.edu > wrote:

>Oh no... not this thread again... will somebody please start an
>alt.conspiracy.nutrasweet newsgroup?


Much of this material is very questionable from a scientific 
standpoint, but one can't completely dismiss it out of hand.

I'm pretty sure that there is a common thread running through 
much of this grass roots politically inspired material (e.g. 
anti-immunization, chemical pollution, etc. etc. ) and that is that 
some people are hypersensitive to various stimuli.  I think this has 
now been well demonstrated in at least some situations.

The very reason that it may be hard to detect these hypersensitivities 
in the laboratory or clinic has to do with the major change in brain 
and body state which accompanies the stressful clinical experience - 
a state of heightened sympathetic arousal.  This may have the effect 
of temporarily normalizing brain levels of the monoamine modulatory 
neurotransmitters in those whose basal levels are low.

These changes in neurotransmitter levels are probably also an 
integral part of the coordinated brain-immune response to infection, 
which is why neurological and psychological symptoms are not at 
all unusual in infection and immunization.  Serotonin appears to 
play the principle role of inhibiting seizures, and there may be 
a compensating reduction in serotonin when dopamine is temporarily 
increased, depending on the mix of amino acids in food intake.

There is a definite age and genetic susceptibility for these adverse 
reactions - surprisingly it appears to be at least party related 
to occupation, because of the complex relationship between genes, 
personality, and vocation.  (There is plenty of scientific 
evidence for this relationship).  Pilots and flight attendants in 
the airline industry, and physicians and nurses in the medical 
industry appear to be high risk groups.

Self medication for the wide variety of medical conditions which are 
part of this susceptibility profile often ends up as substance abuse
- it's not just because medical people in particular have easier 
access to drugs.


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