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Smoking Vaccine Could Block Nicotine Buzz

by Shane McGlaun

After working in a hospital for over a decade, I’ve been around many people that had major health problems related to smoking. Combine the health issues with the fact that smoking is just absolutely disgusting to me, I think everyone should stop smoking. Especially my UPS driver, who routinely delivers me packages that smell like a used ashtray.

My dad used to smoke so I can appreciate how hard it is for people to quit, though. Scientists have been working on a vaccine that is designed to flood the body with an antibody to attack nicotine as it enters the body, rendering it useless as a source of pleasure.

The researchers are conducting a study in mice and have found that the so-called smoking vaccine is up to 85% effective at blocking nicotine in a mouse brain. The researchers say years of additional research is needed before the vaccine can be tested on people.

“As far as we can see, the best way to treat chronic nicotine addiction from smoking is to have these Pac-Man-like antibodies on patrol, clearing the blood as needed before nicotine can have any biological effect.” The challenge according to the researchers has been to develop a vaccine that is able to produce enough antibodies to stop nicotine from entering the brain and delivering the effects smokers crave.

[via BBC]

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