Breaking News
February 21, 2018 - ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ Traumas Lack Realism
February 21, 2018 - Sleep quality improves with help of incontinence drug
February 21, 2018 - Scientists uncover genetic cause behind typhoid’s antibiotic resistance
February 21, 2018 - Study reveals a significant link between heavy alcohol use and dementia
February 21, 2018 - French scientists develop new wearable laser that eradicates skin conditions
February 21, 2018 - People with major depressive disorder have reduced arginine levels, study shows
February 21, 2018 - National Health Spending at $3.5 Trillion in 2017, CMS Says
February 21, 2018 - Substantial inequalities in cesarean births persist in many countries
February 21, 2018 - Early childhood immune signature predicts risk of developing asthma later on
February 21, 2018 - Stanford researchers explore how gut bacteria respond to common changes in habitat
February 21, 2018 - Household Products May Pollute the Air as Much as Your Car Does: Study
February 21, 2018 - Combo Bests Targeted Agent in mRCC
February 21, 2018 - Researchers discover brain pathway that dissociates opioid addiction from analgesia
February 21, 2018 - Scientists uncover how newly discovered gene helps grow blood vessels
February 21, 2018 - Brain’s quality control process holds clues to obesity’s roots
February 21, 2018 - Researchers to study whether menstrual cups can help prevent vaginal infections
February 21, 2018 - MS patients who feel stigmatized more likely to suffer from depression
February 21, 2018 - Vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy could protect against childhood obesity
February 21, 2018 - Lower-Quality Medical Tx Might Have Skewed Key PCI vs CABG Trials
February 21, 2018 - Love and fear are visible across the brain instead of being restricted to any brain region
February 21, 2018 - Researchers discover potential new antimalarial treatment targets
February 21, 2018 - Adults with congenital heart disease have increased risk for dementia, study finds
February 21, 2018 - Clinical trial studying type 1 diabetes reaches full enrollment
February 21, 2018 - Father’s stress affects the brain development of offspring, mice study shows
February 21, 2018 - ESRD Death Declines in Vasculitis Patients
February 21, 2018 - Taking ibuprofen for long periods found to alter human testicular physiology
February 21, 2018 - Google AI device could predict a person’s risk of a heart attack
February 20, 2018 - FDA Approves Domestic Source for Tc-99m Isotopes
February 20, 2018 - Sanofi rejects refund demand faces Philippine suit over dengue vaccine (Update)
February 20, 2018 - Researchers discover that activation of specific enzyme may help suppress tumor metastasis
February 20, 2018 - Blood or marrow transplantation survivors have higher risk of cognitive impairment
February 20, 2018 - Booze Beats Pot at Being Unhealthy: Oregon Poll
February 20, 2018 - Morning Break: ’20 Years Late’; Drugs in the Dirt; Catching Flu in the Dorm
February 20, 2018 - Another piece to the puzzle in naked mole rats’ long, cancer-free life
February 20, 2018 - Scientists identify four viruses that can produce insulin-like hormones
February 20, 2018 - New e-Health solution developed to prevent cardiovascular disease, dementia in senior citizens
February 20, 2018 - New genetic risk score could help guide screening decisions for prostate cancer
February 20, 2018 - Study finds higher risk of stroke among blacks with atrial fibrillation than whites
February 20, 2018 - Physical activity could be used as strategy for diabetes prevention
February 20, 2018 - Researchers develop sensing method for early detection of cancer and diabetes
February 20, 2018 - New wearable electronics could be game-changer for stroke rehabilitation
February 20, 2018 - Immune history influences person’s response to flu vaccine
February 20, 2018 - Research findings could help develop new drugs to prevent, treat dry eye disease
February 20, 2018 - Serenity Now! Learn to Have Patience with Patients
February 20, 2018 - Computer simulation addresses the problem of blood clotting
February 20, 2018 - Women with type 1 diabetes not protected against coronary artery disease
February 20, 2018 - Persistent bloating can be a sign of ovarian cancer, warns charity
February 20, 2018 - Trump administration proposes rule to loosen curbs on short-term health plans
February 20, 2018 - Key protein involved in epigenetic regulation of gene expression guides skin cell renewal
February 20, 2018 - Heart attack symptoms often missed in women
February 20, 2018 - Diagnosis of celiac disease takes 3.5 years for patients who do not report GI symptoms
February 20, 2018 - Study reveals functional dynamics of ion channels
February 20, 2018 - Study explores link between mortality risk and combustible tobacco use
February 20, 2018 - ‘She Trusted Me, and I’d Turned Her Away’
February 20, 2018 - AbbVie and Voyager Therapeutics collaborate to develop new treatments for tauopathies
February 20, 2018 - Fast food makes the immune system more aggressive in the long term
February 20, 2018 - Therapeutic target for glaucoma could have treatment ramifications for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
February 20, 2018 - Overcoming Negative Reviews | Medpage Today
February 20, 2018 - MyD88—villain of allergies and asthma
February 20, 2018 - Food scientists develop rapid screening technique to detect pesticide residue in vegetables
February 20, 2018 - Lab-grown cerebellar cells may help explain how ASD develops at molecular level
February 20, 2018 - Scientists explore connection between bad sleep habits and stiff blood vessels
February 20, 2018 - New Treatment Apalutamide (Erleada) Approved for Prostate Cancer That Resists Hormone Therapy
February 20, 2018 - Do You Really Need My Signature on That?
February 20, 2018 - HIV-1 genetic diversity is higher in vaginal tract than in blood during early infection
February 20, 2018 - Diabetes does not increase work-loss years due to early retirement
February 20, 2018 - Researchers aim to find out how PTSD affects decisions of police
February 20, 2018 - UH Cleveland Medical Center explores novel treatments for uterine fibroids
February 20, 2018 - Flu Vax Efficacy 25% Against Predominant H3N2 Strain So Far
February 20, 2018 - HIV screening most optimal at 25 years of age if no risk factors
February 20, 2018 - Loyola Medicine primary care physician offers advice to minimize risk of flu
February 20, 2018 - Safe sleep recommendations for parents that may help reduce child’s risk of SUID
February 20, 2018 - Why Do So Few Docs Have Buprenorphine Waivers?
February 20, 2018 - Low levels of alcohol good for the brain
February 20, 2018 - Experimental treatment improves invisible symptoms of a man with spinal cord injury
February 20, 2018 - Myriad’s EndoPredict offers better prediction of breast cancer recurrence, analysis shows
February 20, 2018 - Researchers identify fifteen genes that determine our facial features
February 20, 2018 - Morning Break: New Health IT Player; Luxturna No Bargain; Nuclear Freakout
February 20, 2018 - How does it compare? Hospice care at home, at assisted living facility, at nursing home
February 19, 2018 - Scientists develop water-soluble warped nanographene for bioimaging
Herbal Drug Kratom Contains Opioids, FDA Says

Herbal Drug Kratom Contains Opioids, FDA Says

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 7, 2018 — The popular botanical drug kratom essentially is an opioid, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration declared Tuesday.

Nearly all of kratom’s major compounds bind to opioid receptors in the human brain, and two of the top five most prevalent compounds activate those receptors, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said in a statement.

In addition, there have been 44 reported deaths associated with the use of kratom, often in combination with other substances, Gottlieb said.

Kratom grows naturally in the Southeast Asian countries of Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. It has been sold as a dietary supplement to help manage pain and boost energy.

“Kratom should not be used to treat medical conditions, nor should it be used as an alternative to prescription opioids,” Gottlieb said. “There is no evidence to indicate that kratom is safe or effective for any medical use.”

Claims that kratom is harmless because it’s just a plant are “shortsighted and dangerous,” Gottlieb continued, noting that heroin also is derived from poppy plants.

Gottlieb urged people to seek help from a health care provider if they are using kratom to self-medicate for pain or to treat opioid withdrawal symptoms.

“There are safe and effective, FDA-approved medical therapies available for the treatment of opioid addiction,” Gottlieb said. “Combined with psychosocial support, these treatments are effective.”

Concerns over kratom have been growing in recent years. For example, calls to poison centers regarding kratom increased tenfold between 2010 and 2015, rising from 26 to 263, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

More than one-third of the poison center calls reported use of kratom in combination with other substances, such as illicit drugs, prescription opioids or over-the-counter medications, the CDC said.

“Cases of mixing kratom, other opioids and other types of medication is extremely troubling because the activity of kratom at opioid receptors indicates there may be similar risks of combining kratom with certain drugs, just as there are with FDA-approved opioids,” Gottlieb said.

To assess the potential risks of kratom, FDA researchers used 3-D computer technology to evaluate the chemical constituents of the plant and simulate how they would affect various receptors in the brain.

Computer analysis predicted that 22 of the 25 most prevalent compounds in kratom bind to mu-opioid receptors, which have been linked to pain relief and a feeling of euphoria, Gottlieb said. Those receptors also have been implicated in the addiction process.

“The computational model also predicted that some of the kratom compounds may bind to the receptors in the brain that may contribute to stress responses that impact neurologic and cardiovascular function,” Gottlieb said. “The agency has previously warned of the serious side effects associated with kratom, including seizures and respiratory depression.”

The analysis also revealed that kratom’s compounds form a strong bind to opioid receptors, comparable to controlled opioid medications, Gottlieb said.

In a statement, the American Kratom Association said that the FDA analysis is “an unprecedented abuse of science to create a new computer program that is clearly garbage in/garbage out, avoiding the rules of the Controlled Substances Act and making unproven claims that have been proven to be untrue.”

The FDA’s claims also have been questioned by kratom researcher Scott Hemby, chair of the department of basic pharmaceutical sciences at High Point University in North Carolina.

Hemby has found that kratom’s principal chemicals do bond to opioid receptors and cause opioid-like effects such as pain relief and a euphoric rush from a release of the neurotransmitter dopamine. At least one of the chemicals may also have some addictive properties.

However, Hemby told CNN that kratom acts much less effectively than prescription opioids or heroin, and that the total amount of these compounds in the plant as a whole is so low that it’s unlikely to lead to abuse or addiction.

“Just because it binds, it doesn’t mean it has the same efficacy” as an opioid, Hemby explained.

Hemby also questioned the FDA’s use of computer analysis to arrive at its conclusion.

“They make a lot of hay of using a computer model, but it’s really nice to validate the findings with actual science,” Hemby told CNN. “When it comes to drugs for cancer, we wouldn’t rely on a computer model to drive policy. People would find that unacceptable.”

More information

To read the kratom statement, visit the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

© 2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: February 2018

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles