kratom

A deep dive into kratom, the herb that helps with opioid withdrawal

Kratom (previously) is a widely used herb that has been very effective in treating opioid withdrawal and other chronic, hard-to-treat conditions -- it also became very controversial this year because the DEA decided, without evidence, to class it as a dangerous drug, and then changed its mind (unprecedented!) after a mass-scale petition that included interventions from members of Congress. Read the rest

127,891 people have signed a petition to keep kratom legal

Kratom is a mildly psychoactive plant that has been used in Asia for centuries to treat pain, fatigue, depression,and anxiety. In the US it has shown promise as a way to help people who are addicted to opiates. The DEA recently announced that it is going to make kratom a Schedule I drug, which will make it very difficult for researchers to study any potential medical uses it might have.

From The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association:

In Southeast Asia, kratom has long been used for the management of pain and opium withdrawal. In the West, kratom is increasingly being used by individuals for the self-management of pain or withdrawal from opioid drugs such as heroin and prescription pain relievers. It is these aspects of kratom pharmacology that have received the most scientific attention. Although to our knowledge, no well-controlled clinical studies on the effects of kratom on humans have been published, there is evidence that kratom, kratom extracts, and molecules isolated from kratom can alleviate various forms of pain in animal models.

In response to the DEA's decision, 127,891 people have signed a White House petition to keep kratom off Schedule I. The White House is now required to respond within 60 days. Read the rest

The DEA just added a promising anti-opioid addiction herb to Schedule 1, because reasons

Kratom is a herb that has been in widespread use in Southeast Asia for centuries; it is chewed for to increase stamina, induce gentle euphoria and relaxation, and it has also been used with unheard-of success to help people kick their addictions to opioid painkillers. Read the rest

DEA will ban kratom, a popular herbal supplement

Kratom is an herbal supplement that's become popular in recent years in the United States. Kratom users say taking capsules of the powdered herb helps with social anxiety, chronic pain, and post-traumatic stress disorder. On Tuesday, the Drug Enforcement Administration announced that it intends to place two of kratom’s psychoactive chemicals into its list of Schedule I controlled substances, on temporary basis, citing the necessity "to avoid an imminent hazard to public safety."

According to the DEA, substances in Schedule I "are those that have a high potential for abuse, no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, and a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision."

From the DEA's announcement:

Evidence from poison control centers in the United States also shows that there is an increase in the number of individuals abusing kratom, which contains the main active alkaloids mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine. As such, there has been a steady increase in the reporting of kratom exposures by poison control centers. The American Association of Poison Control Centers identified two exposures to kratom between 2000 and 2005. Additionally, the Texas Poison Center Network (TPCN), which is comprised of six poison centers that service the State of Texas, reported 14 exposures to kratom between January 2009 and September 2013. Between January 2010 and December 2015 U.S. poison centers received 660 calls related to kratom exposure. During this time, there was a tenfold increase in the number of calls received, from 26 in 2010 to 263 in 2015.

Read the rest

Recreational drug kratom hits the same brain receptors as strong opioids

Six US states have banned the sale and use of the Kratom, a psychoactive plant-derived drug from Southeast Asia that is available online and in head shops. Researchers studying kratom have found that it affects brain receptors for strong opioids.

From C&EN:

A new study provides some data to support those states’ concerns (J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, DOI: 10.1021/jacs.6b00360). A team of researchers shows for the first time that kratom’s primary constituent, mitragynine, and four related alkaloids bind to and partially activate human µ-opioid receptors (MORs), the primary targets of strong opioids in the brain, spinal cord, and gastrointestinal tract.

Countdown to kratom landing on the list of federally controlled substances in 3... 2... 1... Read the rest

Safeway Lunch Box Sandwich Spread ad, 1955

The contents of this jar make me think of the old dinner table insult, "Do we eat it, or did we eat it?" Swell drawing, though. I wish I had hands twice the size of my head, too.

[via 10 years ago on Boing Boing] Read the rest

:)