Synthohol is not the answer

So I’ve been doing some thinking and researching about Professor Nutt’s alcohol solution and I am definitely not convinced.  Firstly this is not a new story as digging round on the internet the quote below is taken from an article posted in 2010.

‘By harnessing benzodiazepines like diazepam, the chief ingredient in anti-anxiety med Valium, Nutt sees a future of drinking without becoming addicted, belligerent or — and here’s the kicker — intoxicated. Using one of thousands of possible benzos, researchers are working to tailor a colorless, tasteless synthetic that could eventually replace the alcohol content in beer, wine and liquor.’

http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2010-01/synthetic-alcohol-gives-drinkers-pleasant-buzz-without-hangover-addiction

Secondly benzodiazepines are highly addictive, and interestingly are one of the drugs used to manage physical alcohol dependency withdrawal symptoms (I used to work on an alcoholic liver disease ward).  In the 1950’s benzos earned the nickname “mother’s little helper” for the boom in prescriptions of these anti-anxiety pills to over-stressed and tired housewives across America (http://www.lifetimerecoverycenters.com/benzodiazepine-addictions/).  So potentially rather than having an addiction to alcohol you may end up with an addiction to this pharmaceutical instead ….

And how exactly would that be better?

Edited to add: 24th September 2016

‘Hangover-free alcohol’ could replace all regular alcohol by 2050, says David Nutt

5 thoughts on “Synthohol is not the answer

  1. I would also like to point out that Benzo have horrible withdrawal symptoms that can include seizures. Secondly, if mixed with alcohol they can easily kill a person. what happens when someone mixes a few synthahol drinks with a few real drinks?

    1. Hey Quint! Thanks for reading and commenting on my blog 🙂 Good point about benzo withdrawal and the danger of mixing synthetic alcohol with the real thing – disaster waiting to happen …..

  2. I think he might want try to prevent those effects by making the drug in question a partial agonist instead of a full agonist of the GABA receptor. This way, with a molecule with this property and the correct receptor affinity, the addictive properties and high effect ceiling of normal benzodiazepines could in theory be prevented. The question is if he is able to actually find a substance with those properties.

    1. Hi David Thank you for reading and commenting on my blog. Interesting what you say and if possible then this could a real break-through.

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