Pharmacogenetics

An article in Science News Daily (April 11, 2011, “Pharmacogenetics Testing Offers Way to Reduce Deaths from Drug Toxicity”) discusses the field of pharmacogenetics (also called pharmacogenomics,) the study of an individual’s variation in DNA sequence related to drug response.

Putting a foreign substance such as a psychotropic drug into the body disrupts the body’s normal biochemistry, and can be considered as the introduction of an unnatural and toxic substance into the body. These drugs “work” by changing the normal functions of the body: they speed them up, slow them down, dam them up or overwhelm them. This is why there are side effects with psychiatric drugs.

Forensic psychiatrist Dr. Yolande Lucire (in her paper “Psychotropic Medication and Cytochromes“) makes these statements:

“Since 1994, a substantial number of papers have been published in major refereed medical journals on Adverse Drug Reactions (ADRs). The ballpark estimate is that each year 2.2 million Americans are hospitalised for ADRs and over 100,000 die from them. These are simply adverse reactions to drugs, which are often but not always, unpredictable, and appear only in the fine print of prescribing information.

“Psychiatric drugs have hardly rated a mention, as psychiatric side effects in psychiatric patients have been routinely missed or dismissed by the pharmaceutical companies with ‘It’s the disease, not the drug, doctor.’

“With the drugs used in psychiatry, (and this is very general,) many are metabolised in the liver by an enzyme system called cytochrome P450 (and other cytochrome systems). There are genetic, biological differences between individuals, some of whom do not produce certain cytochromes at all. In practice this means that somewhere between 12 and 20% of Caucasians cannot metabolise certain drugs, for example, SSRIs, at all or they do it slowly. [Cytochrome means “cellular pigment” and is a protein found in blood cells.]

“The following drugs are only a few of the scores that use the cytochrome P450 system for their metabolism: alcohol, nicotine, cannabis, amphetamines, Amitriptyline, Celebrex, Cipramil, Lexapro, Codeine, Valium, Warfarin, Dilantin, Efexor, Feldene, Brufen, grapefruit, Luvox, Aropax, Prednisone, Prozac, Serzone, Risperdal, Tegretol, Voltaren, Zoloft and Zyprexa.”

One of the possible conclusions to be drawn from this emerging area of research is that the toxic effects (side effects) of psychiatric drugs in the body can be significantly multiplied in a large proportion of individuals who lack this ability to effectively metabolize and deal with these toxins.

Dr. Lucire’s research points to the result that persons with abnormal P450 metabolism who are given psychiatric drugs may reach a level of toxicity within hours or days which correlates with the onset of intense and harmful side effects.

The psychopharmaceutical industry has expanded its influence far beyond its ability to be effective, if indeed it ever was. One must also always keep in mind that while these drugs have been repeatedly shown to be not only ineffective but also harmful, the real underlying problem is that psychiatrists fraudulently diagnose life’s problems as an “illness”, and stigmatize unwanted behavior or study problems as “diseases,” combined with the profit-motives of pharmaceutical companies vying for a piece of the resultant psychiatric “treatment.” Psychiatry’s stigmatizing labels, programs and treatments are harmful junk science; their diagnoses of “mental disorders” are a hoax – unscientific, fraudulent and harmful. All psychiatric treatments, not just psychiatric drugs, are dangerous.

[Thanks to Eileen Dannemann, Director of the National Coalition of Organized Women, for acquainting us with this information.]

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