The Promise of Disordered Proteins

Various biotechnology companies are betting on the therapeutic potential of a certain class of proteins in researching possible new drugs.

Such proteins, called “intrinsically disordered proteins” (IDPs), look different from the proteins with rigid structures that are more familiar in cells. IDPs are shape-shifters, appearing as ensembles of components that constantly change configurations. This loose structure allows the IDPs to bring together a wide variety of molecules at critical moments, such as during a cell’s response to stress. Less flexible proteins tend to have a more limited number of binding partners. When IDPs do not function properly, disease can ensue. Medical researchers haveĀ  been trying to create treatments to eliminate or regulate malfunctioning IDPs.

In 2017 researchers demonstrated that an FDA-approved drug called trifluoperazine (which is prescribed for psychotic disorders and anxiety) bound to and inhibited NUPR1, a disordered protein involved in a form of pancreatic cancer.

The NUPR1 (nuclear protein 1) gene is an intrinsically disordered protein coding gene which is associated with pancreatic cancer, although the details of such functions are still unknown.

Trifluoperazine (brand name Novo-Trifluzine) is an older antipsychotic, also called a Major Tranquilizer or Neuroleptic. As with all such antipsychotics, possible side effects are: akathisia, neuroleptic malignant syndrome, tardive dyskinesia, anxiety, depression, mood changes, hostility, pancreatitis, seizures, suicidal thoughts, and violence.

The point we want to make is that researchers are actively investigating psychotropic drugs to see if they can be re-purposed for other uses than for which the FDA currently approves. If such drugs, or offshoots of such drugs, are given permission to be prescribed for additional uses, then more people could be exposed to the side effects of such drugs.

“TFP [trifluoperazine] cannot be used in clinic for treating patients with cancer, due to the numerous undesirable side effects that occur at efficient anticancer doses.” Since TFP shows such strong central nervous system side effects, researchers try to develop TFP derivatives with less side effects. Of course, human clinical trials must be done to show the results before marketing a drug, since the research up to this point has been done on mice.

But again, the points we want to make are that 1) the details of how these drugs are supposed to “work” are often unknown; 2) this type of research is highly speculative; and 3) the base drugs have toxic side effects.

All this reflects back to the original use of such psychotropic drugs and their horrific side effects. And the point we really want to make about this is that the root problem is not even the drugs. The real problem is that psychiatrists fraudulently diagnose life’s problems as an “illness”, and stigmatize unwanted behavior or study problems asĀ  “diseases,” using the fraudulent Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders as justification to prescribe these drugs and other coercive and abusive “treatments.” 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.

Decades of psychiatric monopoly over mental health has only lead to upwardly spiraling mental illness statistics, continuously escalating funding demands, and ever more addictive and harmful drugs which can cause violence and suicide.

The many critical challenges facing societies today reflect the vital need to strengthen individuals through workable, viable and humanitarian alternatives to harmful psychiatric options. Contact your local, state and federal representatives and let them know what you think about this.

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