health

Many drugs have mirror image chemical structures – while one may be helpful, the other may be harmful

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By Sajish Mathew

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Yet again, reality is not what it seems - quantum medicine.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Indeed, a nice science article , explaining a Nerv research paper. But in the end I just only smelled the intentions of selling the next bunch of new drugs. Personally I would recommend to restrict oneself to only a few long term proven medical drugs and those also only in situations when there is no other option left.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

But in the end I just only smelled the intentions of selling the next bunch of new drugs. 

Imagine that, reading an article about how it is very important to consider the chirality of compounds to properly discriminate the effects and only getting the impression of the desire of economic profit. The discovering can have many different effects, from improving the effect of generic drugs to prove why new candidates for treatment are actually less useful than proved on clinical trials. Thinking this is just an appeal to profit from some future discoveries evidence more a personal bias than what the article clearly explains.

Personally I would recommend to restrict oneself to only a few long term proven medical drugs and those also only in situations when there is no other option left.

There is always other options, including not treating the disease and get the full risks and decrease of health from rejecting proved medical interventions. From a practical point of view most people will prefer to bet for something that has evidence of benefit instead of subjecting themselves to a slow (or not so slow) deterioration until death just because of an arbitrary lapse of time has not passed.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

The title and the introduction of this article are different from their research topic. The title and intro are about "mirror image" chiral isomers (enantiomers), while their research is about trans-cis stereoisomers, which are not mirror images of each other (not chiral). I understand that they try to make the science easier to understand by using the thalomide story, but at the same time it is rather deceiving.

Regarding their research itself, I found it difficult to believe that nobody studied the different behavior of the cis and trans isomers, because they usually have different reactivity and binding affinity (and different shape).

5 ( +5 / -0 )

There is a commonly used supplement which also comes in different chiral forms, Vitamin E, a fat soluble substance that helps to quench damaging free radicals in the lipid bilayer of cell membranes among other functions. When the Vitamin is sourced from a plant, there is only the 'd' (dextro) isomer which is the active form that the body uses. Vitamin E is also produced industrially but results in both the 'd' and 'l' isomers being produced and stereoisomers are HUGELY difficult to separate so the usual cheaper brands of Vitamin E supplements contain 'dl Tocopherols'. Looking on the label, if you see 'd Tocopherol', that will be a plant extract (usually 'rosehips'). I have seen in the past some researchers suggesting that the 'l' isomer may be less than good but I cannot now find anything definitive at this time.

Caveat: Because Vitamin E is fat soluble, it usually comes dissolved in an oil and often that oil is animal in origin. If one understands and observes Halal, the label must be read to see what the capsule contains. If the word Porcine is observed, the capsule is Haram. Bovine, Ovine, Equine should be no problem. For example, some time ago I noticed on the Costco house brand that the oil was 'Porcine'. I pointed this out to management several times because who reads the labels on vitamins and, eventually, there was no identification at all. (?) So, if this matters to you and you do not see the source of the oil listed, buy another brand.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Sven AsaiToday  11:51 am JST

Indeed, a nice science article , explaining a Nerv research paper. But in the end I just only smelled the intentions of selling the next bunch of new drugs. Personally I would recommend to restrict oneself to only a few long term proven medical drugs and those also only in situations when there is no other option left.

Exactly.

The market for Alzheimer Disease medications has almost tripled in the last 10 years.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Personally I would recommend to restrict oneself to only a few long term proven medical drugs

And how is that long term proof going to be established if no one takes the drugs? If you have a serious condition such as Alzheimers, would most people not take at least a small risk if the alternative is basically continued deterioration?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

The market for Alzheimer Disease medications has almost tripled in the last 10 years.

This is a good thing, because it means research to develop effective treatment is guaranteed to increase as well, only people that have never witnessed how the disease destroy the mind of the patients can ever think it is better that no drug is ever developed against it.

The article describes a process that can even help discarding candidates treatment that will not work before they are recommended for patients, or even improve available candidates so treatment can be more effective without any extra investment, nor increase in price.

Thinking scientific advancement can only mean looking for profits is just antiscientific bias.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

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