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Rat study shows exposure to Ecstasy early in pregnancy induces brain changes

Adam Meadows meadowsa at uclink.berkeley.edu
Sat Aug 30 17:50:48 EST 2003

Jasbird <Jasbird#dead-mail-box#@myrealbox.com> wrote in message news:<0280lvcqq4c4d7ltog6fkf8aqi80g4fvdl at 4ax.com>...
> More bullshit from NIDA.
> : Dr. Jack W. Lipton, doctoral student James Koprich, and their 
> : colleagues injected 8 pregnant rats twice daily with MDMA from day 14 
> : through day 20 of pregnancy, 
> But people don't do MDMA twice daily over a 7 day period.

I've known people who have used it more frequently but...

> They usually
> do it only once or twice per week or less.

...this is definitely more typical.  The science should focus on
understanding the harms associated with the most common usage

> : a period corresponding to the first 3 months of human fetal
> : development. The scientists injected saline 
> : twice daily during the same period to another 8 pregnant rats. The 
> : researchers examined brain tissue of the rat pups when they were 21 
> : days old. A 21-day-old rat pup is roughly equivalent to a 2- to 
> : 6-year-old child.
> These 'correspondences' between people and rats are pretty dubious.
> Animal biology doesn't work like that. Human development is much
> slower and is different, so how can anyone know what kind of dosing
> regimen 'corresponds' between people and rats or that any kind of
> regimen does.

I agree.  I am currently reading a paper on the development of
tamoxifen (a very successful anti-breast cancer therapy) and it was
noted that enthusiasm for the drug was initially muted beacuse the
drug had completely opposite effects in mice as compared to rats!! 
Animal models are very useful, but great care has to be taken in
extrapolating findings to humans.  Unfortunately, illicit drug
research is so politically charged that the science it generates
(while technically accurate) misinforms public policy makers and
generally makes coming to conclusions on the negative effects of
recreational drug use very difficult.

> : "Our most striking finding was that 21-day-old MDMA-exposed pups had a 
> : 502-percent increase in the number of dopamine neuron fibers in the 
> : frontal cortex compared with control animals," notes Dr. Lipton. 
> : Abnormal or overly numerous connections in the frontal cortex may 
> : result in aberrant signaling there, possibly resulting in abnormal 
> : behavior.
> Every NIDA study uses huge quantities of MDMA to show that MDMA is
> toxic in huge quantities.

Here they don't show it is toxic mind you; they show that it
dramatically (I can only assume a 502% increase is statistically
significant) increases the number of dopamine neuron fibers in a
specific region of the brain.  I hope that the researchers can see the
possible application for good of this chemical in stimulating this
type of growth for those who may potentially need such a treatment,
and not just turn this into another pillar of the "Drugs are bad
mmkay" message.

>  I recommend that people don't do huge
> amounts of MDMA - especially not several times per night nor several
> days at a time.

Good advice.  I especially recommend the same for alcohol. :)


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