Research

Interview with International Drug Policy and Harm Reduction Expert Pascal Tanguay

This interview is the text version of the audio episode #66 of the Kratom Science Podcast, posted December 2, 2021. It’s been lightly edited for clarity in reading. Pascal Tanguay is originally from Montreal, Canada and has been living in Thailand for 20 years studying issues around people who use drugs, international and Southeast Asian …

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Lead (Pb) in kratom possibly hazardous, say researchers

Researchers from Midwestern University recently published an article in the journal Toxics entitled “Public Health Implications and Possible Sources of Lead (Pb) as a Contaminant of Poorly Regulated Kratom Products in the United States”. Based in part on earlier research conducted by lead author and pharmacologist Dr. Walter Prozialeck, several randomly selected kratom products have …

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NIDA is rolling out a massive nationwide study of regular kratom consumers

QR Code link https://enroll.drugabuse.gov/kratom-nida/ From the research team: About The KEMA Study We are conducting a new study on kratom entitled “Real-world momentary assessment of kratom use accompanied by product assays: A natural history study toward an interdisciplinary characterization of kratom use and pharmacology”! That is a long name, so we typically refer to it …

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Possible causes of kratom-related liver toxicities and deaths

Herb-induced liver injury (HILI) is “a rare adverse reaction associated with the consumption of herbal products”. A review published in 2020 found 12,068 cases of herb-induced liver injury worldwide, as well as 46,266 cases of liver injury induced by the use of drugs (Teschke et al., 2021). Herbal and dietary supplements contribute to 20% of …

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Interview with Dr. Christopher McCurdy and Dr. Brian Pearson on the History and Future of Kratom Plant Science and Pharmacology

This interview is a transcript of Kratom Science Podcast #69 Kratom Science: I want to start off with Dr. McCurdy. You were originally with University of Mississippi. That university is known for the only federally legal cannabis farm. You started to study kratom around 2004, and I’m just wondering how you became interested in kratom? …

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Pennsylvania House Democrats Compare Kratom to Heroin in Pseudoscientific Tweet

On May 2nd, the Pennsylvania House Democratic Policy Committee @PADemPolicy posted on Twitter that it was “in Allentown with @RepSchlossberg for a roundtable on the Evolving Epidemic: Opioids and Treatment Options.” Then in a reply to this tweet, wrote “Kratom is widely available but suppresses breathing much the same way as heroin.” As anyone who …

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Study: Mitragynine does not rely on its metabolism into 7-hydroxymitragynine to produce pain relieving effects

In a new study by the team at University of Florida, scientists found that the metabolite 7-hydroxymitragynine does not account for the pain-relieving effects of its parent alkaloid, mitragynine (Berthold et al., 2021). Here we investigated the hotplate antinociception, pharmacokinetics, and tissue distribution of mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine at equianalgesic oral doses in…mice to determine the …

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Interview with Dr. Fabian Pitter Steinmetz on Toxicology and Advocacy by Scientists for Better Drug Policy

Dr. Fabian Pitter Steinmetz is a toxicologist from Germany who in 2021 testified for the World Health Organization’s (WHO) 44th Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD). There, Dr. Steinmetz gave the case for why kratom should be kept legal. As a member for the European Coalition for Just and Effective Drug Policies (ENCOD), he is …

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Caffeine is an Addictive, Deadly Drug

Coffee is a tropical evergreen plant originating in Ethiopia but now grown worldwide. Two species, Coffea arabica and Coffea canephora, are predominantly sold as a recreational stimulant. Referred to “joe”, “java”, “brew”, “mud”, “liquid cocaine”, “espresso” and “go juice”, coffee is a drug of abuse, primarily used for its psychoactive and stimulant effects, similar to …

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