Category Archives: Drugs

April 23

Am I addicted to coffee?

Recently over coffee, my friend told me that scientists have been doing drug research wrong for years. He was referring to an article about the effects of social environment on drug taking. In the article, the author criticizes scientists, government, and media for portraying drug addiction without accounting for causes of drug addiction outside of […]

December 12

A (Not So) Brief History of Psychedelic Science

Psychedelics* (i.e. chemicals that reliably produce altered states of consciousness characterized by sensory distortion and changes in cognition) have been subject to human ritualistic, therapeutic, and recreational use for millennia.  Their profound perceptual effects have the potential to elucidate countless mysteries of human neurobiology, illuminating the sensitivity of our conscious experience to stereotyped, chemically-induced changes. […]

October 16

Lithium: Wonder Drug? Part II

Note from the author: This post is dedicated to my biology nerds out there.  If you follow my Gene-of-the-Week posts (and you should because they’re the weirdest), you know that I often get lost in the cellular and molecular details of life, and it’s totally overwhelming.  I wrote this post specifically to discuss the mechanisms […]

October 02

Lithium: Wonder Drug? Part I

I’m so happy ’cause today I’ve found my friends They’re in my head What comes to mind when you hear the word lithium? A drug used to manage life-threatening mood disorders? A potentially deadly toxin? A chemical found in trace amounts in many compounds in nature? (Or maybe just the Nirvana song?) Any of these […]

January 16

Cannabis, Creativity, & The Cortex

I believe in a long, prolonged, derangement of the senses in order to obtain the unknown. – Jim Morrison The illegality of cannabis is outrageous, an impediment to full utilization of a drug which helps produce the serenity and insight, sensitivity and fellowship so desperately needed in this increasingly mad and dangerous world. – Carl […]

January 09

Reefer Madness?

The recent legalization of marijuana in Colorado and Washington makes this is a good time to think about the potential risks of marijuana consumption. Marijuana has a long and storied history of recreational use in humans (earliest evidence of its use is 4000 BC in China1). The popular image of marijuana today is as a […]