View Full Version : Stimulants and Brain Cell Death


JRayV
12-08-07, 04:54 PM
www.psychiatry.ufl.edu/<WBR>Newsletters/Content/I-1%20Cadet.pdf (http://www.psychiatry.ufl.edu/Newsletters/Content/I-1%20Cadet.pdf)

Imnapl
12-08-07, 11:29 PM
Q Do drugs used in the treatment of ADD/ADHD cause cell death?
A Ritalin does not kill the brain cells, but some other drugs used in ADHD treatment do.

That's good news about Ritalin. I wonder what the other drugs are?

LittlePrincess
12-09-07, 12:09 AM
Keep in mind that they never did specify what dosages or mg/kg they were testing here. In other words... do therapeutic dosages of amphetamines (i.e. Adderall or Dex) cause brain cell death? Hmmmm...... http://addforums.com/forums/images/smilies/rolleyes.gif

ozchris
12-09-07, 12:55 AM
interesting article. I'd assume he's mainly talking about stimulant abuse but I wouldn't be surprised if some cell death occurred in ADD patients being treated with amphetamines, although it would be on a smaller scale.

I'll make sure I follow this up when he presents his data at the meeting he talks about.

HighFunctioning
12-09-07, 01:05 AM
Q. What type of patients are methamphetamine/MDMA users?
A. Because these patients are destroying their brains, they may not be able to follow instructions when they are in a treatment program. I wouldn’t say they were bad patients or even noncompliant. The brain damage might hinder their ability to follow through, however.

I suppose that is one way of looking at it.......

HighFunctioning
12-09-07, 01:13 AM
Q Do drugs used in the treatment of ADD/ADHD cause cell death?
A Ritalin does not kill the brain cells, but some other drugs used in ADHD treatment do.

That's good news about Ritalin. I wonder what the other drugs are?

Perhaps the idea behind this is that Ritalin may not be able to cause brain-cell death as it has a very narrow effect profile (doesn't have nearly the potential as amphetamine at very high doses).

Considering that the individual is focused on drugs of abuse (as he works with the National Institute on Drug Abuse), I would imagine that these findings are with respect to drug abuse.

meadd823
12-10-07, 03:09 AM
Q)What about caffeine and nicotine?

A) Abnormalities in caffeine users have only been shown in withdrawal. If you’re a coffee drinker,keep drinking it. Nicotine has proven positive in protecting against morphine-induced cell death.Nicotine does not kill immune cells.

So if you are a heroin user by all means don't quit smoking - :rolleyes:





Q) What sort of things do you see in the post-mortem brain of a methamphetamine user?

A )In the lab, when you cut the brain and perform histology stains, you can see cells that are dying; however, this must be done within a certain time frame, because after approximately two weeks, it is not seen. The optimal staining timeframe is somewhere between 24-72 hours.

Ernst and others have used imaging to show evidence of cell death in humans. No question brain cells die. The only question is how you go about proving it in research studies.

#1 He is looking at dead people's brain - the cells are dying - no surprises there.

#2 They are unable to prove as of yet that people who take Adderall or other methamphetamines in doses normally prescribed for ADD have brain cells dieing any faster or in larger quantities than any other human - like a control not on ADD medications.

#3 They haven't even proved living drug addicts are killing their brain cells any faster than people who do not take any drugs -

#4 Brain cells die every day brain cells are born every day - as you get older the number of brain cells that die are more than the ones being born this is a normal part of aging - if any one has found a way to stop aging other than dying young please PM me this secret and together we shall make millions :p





Q) What are the short-term/long-term effects of methamphetamine use?


A )Short-term problems include cognitive, memory and decision problems. Motor system starts to be compromised and you see tremors. Long-term use can result in the development of problems with thinking and with reality testing. They can have the psychotic like symptoms of Schizophrenia.

This in no way describes my initial experience on Adderall I would venture to say my working memory improved as did my ability to make a decision - I have been on Adderall for over a decade and so far I do not show any signs of schizophrenia. Although when my medication first begin to wear off my husband complains of me being brain dead. . . .so I fade out in a conversation {shrug}




This specific report is not dated plus the man's credentials indicate these would be drugs at abusive levels

He is presently Chief, Molecular Neuropsychiatry
Section, and Clinical Director of the NIH/NIDA Intramural Research Program. His research interests include
(1) clinical neurobiology of drug abuse and addiction,
(2) cellular and molecular neurotoxicology of drug abuse,
(3) the involvement of free radicals in
neurodegeneration,
(4) the role of cell death-related genes in the toxicity of drug abuse,
and
(5) the participation of catecholamines in neurodegenerative disorders.


OKay that was easy . . . .next :D

SB_UK
12-10-07, 01:54 PM
I suppose that is one way of looking at it.......:-)

... trying to watch a movie which is playing on screen number 5 in town -
after locking yourself to the toilet in your basement flat - just under 100 miles away from the cinema
- with nose clips and ear muffs on
and your eyes accidentally gouged out - dropped onto the floor ... and squelched by your left foot

... ... an interesting though not altogether satisfying way of looking at it.

'So how was the film then ?'
"Well - you know"

... ... an interesting and pointless experiment unless the experiment can reasonably be shown to have some bearing on normality.

TRUE STORY

After drinking 50 litres of water

-> I died.
Shame that.

OK - so thanks for the moments silence (there) - and yes - I realise you're sad and will miss me
- but please DO NOT!!! let my death be for nothing -

DO NOT EVER EVER EVER DRINK WATER AGAIN!

(it'll kill ya!)

just look at me

SB_UK

R.I.P.

-*-

sponsored by

R.ecombiwater (TM)
I.ncredibly
P.ure

~ reasurringly just less expensive than quite expensive wine
(low in aromatic polyunsaturated hydrocarbon polymers) ~

HighFunctioning
12-10-07, 09:29 PM
#1 He is looking at dead people's brain - the cells are dying - no surprises there.


And by 48-72 hours, the all the cells are dead? I'd hate to think that this doctor is trying this on living people (if they're not dead now, they will be).

#2 They are unable to prove as of yet that people who take Adderall or other methamphetamines in doses normally prescribed for ADD have brain cells dieing any faster or in larger quantities than any other human - like a control not on ADD medications.

This goes along with my point on methylphenidate vs. amphetamine. The effects of amphetamine scale better with doses than methylphenidate, so this doesn't imply that there's anything fundamentally worse about amphetamine than methylphendiate (other than a butter knife is less harmful than a sword). I bet swords can kill brain cells as well.


This specific report is not dated plus the man's credentials indicate these would be drugs at abusive levels

It's also very unspecific. It's worded more like a news report than something scientific.

HighFunctioning
12-10-07, 09:47 PM
DO NOT EVER EVER EVER DRINK WATER AGAIN!

(it'll kill ya!)

just look at me

SB_UK

R.I.P.

-*-

sponsored by

R.ecombiwater (TM)
I.ncredibly
P.ure

~ reasurringly just less expensive than quite expensive wine
(low in aromatic polyunsaturated hydrocarbon polymers) ~

How tragic! Who would have thought that water could be deadly?

I suspect foul play. The water was poisoned. Perhaps it was tainted with the deadly amphetamine hydrochloride? Since it rapidly kills brain cells, it should be sufficient in low quantities.

No, we're really just medicating everyone in mass. It's just that some of us are less sensitive to it than others. That's why the rate of ADD is going up.. individuals are developing tolerance to the poison.

ozchris
12-11-07, 01:06 AM
It's also very unspecific. It's worded more like a news report than something scientific. It is basicly a news report. He'll present his findings at the meeting that is mentioned in the article.

I'd think this guy knows what he's talking about. He is a clinical director and a doctor after all.

Lets wait until we see evidence before judging his findings.


I don't think we should be comparing the risks of water with amphetamines. Yes...just about anything can kill you. However something that acts specifically on the brain is bound to have some complications such as cell death, even if it is minuscule

blueroo
12-11-07, 05:51 AM
It is basicly a news report. He'll present his findings at the meeting that is mentioned in the article.

I'd think this guy knows what he's talking about. He is a clinical director and a doctor after all.

Lets wait until we see evidence before judging his findings.


I don't think we should be comparing the risks of water with amphetamines. Yes...just about anything can kill you. However something that acts specifically on the brain is bound to have some complications such as cell death, even if it is minuscule

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Being an expert does not prove that your results are correct. That is a huge logical fallacy.

His results don't make logical sense and the science is questionable, so we can feel free to judge them all we like. We shouldn't remain ignorant and unquestioning simply because the speaker is considered smart.

Matt S.
12-11-07, 09:27 AM
I am not going to be concerned about brain cell death, I have been on Dexedrine since age 6 and although I am back on the methylphenidates again for awhile I doubt much damage has been done, it isn't quite the same as shooting up a gram of crystal methamphetamine.

ozchris
12-11-07, 04:40 PM
I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Being an expert does not prove that your results are correct. That is a huge logical fallacy.

His results don't make logical sense and the science is questionable, so we can feel free to judge them all we like. We shouldn't remain ignorant and unquestioning simply because the speaker is considered smart. I never said it proves his results are correct. Please read my post again.

Please explain to me how his results do not make logical sense? Are you a neurologist? I really doubt you even have the knowledge to make that judgment.

How is his science questionable? Explain this to me in detail. What is it about his science exactly that is questionable? we haven't seen his results yet...

It's incredibly illogical to judge this man based on a news report. It's important to wait until we have all the facts before jumping to conclusions.

Science is always changing and discoveries particularly in the brain are always happening.

I would consider it ignorant to make judgments without all the facts. I have no problems with being questioning but we know nothing about his scientific methods so far.

Keep an open mind until we get his research. He may turn out to be completely wrong, but we cannot know that yet.

If his findings are true I would think the cell death would be insignificant in those treated with stimulants. The real problem would occur with those that abuse stimulants. IMHO

(disclaimer: I take stimulants to treat my ADD so I'm not anti-med)

blueroo
12-11-07, 04:44 PM
I never said it proves his results are correct. Please read my post again.

Please explain to me how his results do not make logical sense? Are you a neurologist? I really doubt you even have the knowledge to make that judgment.

How is his science questionable? Explain this to me in detail. What is it about his science exactly that is questionable? we haven't seen his results yet...

It's incredibly illogical to judge this man based on a news report. It's important to wait until we have all the facts before jumping to conclusions.

Science is always changing and discoveries particularly in the brain are always happening.

I would consider it ignorant to make judgments without all the facts. I have no problems with being questioning but we know nothing about his scientific methods so far.

Keep an open mind until we get his research. He may turn out to be completely wrong, but we cannot know that yet.

If his findings are true I would think the cell death would be insignificant in those treated with stimulants. The real problem would occur with those that abuse stimulants. IMHO

(disclaimer: I take stimulants to treat my ADD so I'm not anti-med)

http://www.addforums.com/forums/showpost.php?p=517512&postcount=7

It helps to read the thread you're commenting on. :)

We may not be experts, but that is irrelevant. Failing to be an expert does not prove that one is wrong. It doesn't take another emperor to point out that the emperor has no clothes. It may take a hundred geniuses to build the supporting evidence for a complex and advanced hypothesis, but it only takes one correct fool pointing out a flaw in the logic to break the whole thing.

ozchris
12-11-07, 04:48 PM
Yes blueroo I've read that post.

It's not as simple as the patients are dead so the brain cells are dieing. The cells in the brain DO NOT die immediately after someone dies.

Try and answer my questions in your own words. Feel free to use scientific terminology, don't dumb it down for me.


Edit: I'm not going to bother to reply anymore until we have the facts. It might turn out that he is very wrong...

We do not have the facts. Therefore we cannot pass an intelligent judgment.

HighFunctioning
12-11-07, 05:05 PM
I think blueroo was simply stating that we should not have faith in authority. We should not take this person's word as truth simply because he holds some object (a piece of paper), is associated with some organization, or has X years of experience. I don't think he's stating that the conclusions in the paper are wrong.

The opposite of that is not having faith in those without authority, but simply not having faith in those with.

Even if we do have the "facts", those facts may not apply to a context that is useful to us. Most here aren't that concerned about brain damage and abuse-level doses (not to say that the results aren't interesting, but probably not surprising). I think most of the judgment here is about the context of the facts (or what has potential to be "fact") as opposed to disputing the facts themselves.

blueroo
12-11-07, 05:54 PM
I think blueroo was simply stating that we should not have faith in authority. We should not take this person's word as truth simply because he holds some object (a piece of paper), is associated with some organization, or has X years of experience. I don't think he's stating that the conclusions in the paper are wrong.

The opposite of that is not having faith in those without authority, but simply not having faith in those with.

Even if we do have the "facts", those facts may not apply to a context that is useful to us. Most here aren't that concerned about brain damage and abuse-level doses (not to say that the results aren't interesting, but probably not surprising). I think most of the judgment here is about the context of the facts (or what has potential to be "fact") as opposed to disputing the facts themselves.

HighFunctioning hit the nail on the head. The real question about this news release is what exactly it accomplishes. There is no new information contained in it. The Doctor's study will likely show evidence for various dosages and their associated levels of toxicity, and perhaps a more detailed list of which areas of the brain see the most cell death. Nothing earth-shattering here. I only hope that the results show that low levels of methamphetamine use do not cause, or only cause minimal levels of cell death. It would be a shame for folks who have or are taking desoxyn to learn that the drug which helps their dopamine system will eventually destroy it.

That said, this Q&A is laughable, even if it is true. It reads like DEA anti-drug propoganda, and I wouldn't be surprised if it were given that the doctor is from a national institute. It's shameful to use this kind of useful science as a grandstand for a political agenda.

SB_UK
12-11-07, 05:54 PM
- as part of the drug discovery process -
every single drug is tested in a series of 'tox assays' -

- which vary in their closeness of fit to the in vivo state.

All drugs result in a value being scored -
for measures of toxicity

- and so it's reasonable to assume that all drugs can be made to kill off cells within the organism (also) (dosage dependent).

What's there (for us) to be worried about?

The worry which is being expressed here - is of potential CNS damage.

However since dexamphetamine has been around for a such long time - perhaps better to look through case studies
(the 'pure' clinical journals include case on case of peculiar observation -
as peculiar observations mount -
the peculiar relationship being observed can make it into the orthodoxy).

However since dexamphetamine has been around for a such long time - perhaps better to look through case studies
- to see if there's any evidence of neurological problems with normal long-term usage of stimulant medication.

There's a real problem with our meds -
hysterical reaction - to their relationship to the family of illicit drugs
and
- sadly -
hype enters into medical research all too often these days;

[1 + 1 == 2]

it's hard for all of us - to divine the nature of the study - in the face of meaningless words within the scientific publication - many of which acquire meaning only by reading between the lines
or below the lines
(subtext).


For sure though - I have no doubt that if there were any evidence of these problems - that a trigger happy medical establishment which is nervous around this class of drug -
'd jump onto any clinical evidence - and ban the meds without even the slightest hesitation -

- there have been previous mentions here -
particularly Canada + adderall - and a very tenuous link which resulted in the meds being withdrawn for a period.

The posts are around here some place - and revolved around a death (I think) - through CVS complications whilst taking adderall -
I don't remember how the issue blew over -
- though know that some of the guys here were shocked at the Canadian Government's reaction - in the face of such little evidence.

It's everywhere - this mad crazy desire to ban our meds -
- if they are to be withdrawn - we need to see a reasoned basis to that decision -
- and not for reasons which relate to the day by day squeamishness which characterize medics who're scared to take any chances - given the threat of legal action.

It's all a big mess -
little people who take low levels of meds lose.

Big rich lawyers, big rich doctors and the patients out to score a quick buck - drive our (little people) losses.

ozchris
12-11-07, 06:30 PM
Well, I don't want any drugs to be banned. Nor do I want any of this used for some anti-drug political agenda.

There's no mention of when this neuroscience meeting is being held but I guess I'll wait until he presents his evidence properly before discarding it.

Yeah the Q&A article provided is pointless IMO. That's why I want to wait until the I have the proper information.

If the folks using desoxyn are destroying their dopamine system in some shape or form it's important they know about it. Even if the effects are negligible.

I also doubt they'll find anything new but I'm not sure how many studies have taken place where they actually cut open peoples brains and examine what effect amphetamines may have.

As I mentioned in my first post in this thread - Yes it's probably mainly to do with drug abuse and high levels of amphetamines but he did mention people taking amphetamines at therapeutic doses may have similar effects - although they'd be much smaller I'd imagine.

Yes it probably won't be anything new but it's not worth speculating until we see the information and if it relates to people taking stimulants for ADD. We don't know either way at the moment.

Once I get hold of his data I'll add it to this thread to see if it's relevant.