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Pasquale Valerio WRT 204 Professor Ligi Paper #3 Research May 3, 2016 Psychopharmacology: An Approach to using Schedule I Psychoactive Drugs in...

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Pasquale Valerio WRT 204 Professor Ligi Paper #3 Research May 3, 2016 Psychopharmacology: An Approach to using Schedule I Psychoactive Drugs in Medicine with Neurological Applications Abstract: Since the establishment of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1930, the pharmaceutical and medical industries have faced many challenges regarding drug production and marketing. Every new drug undergoes rigorous research and clinical studies before being sent to the FDA for approval. The process on average can take a minimum of 12 years for a drug to be marketed which is always followed by post marketing surveillance. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is responsible for the scheduling of drugs that have medicinal properties but also carry a potential for abuse. Schedule I drugs are considered to have no accepted medical use, and have a high potential for abuse in the United States. There has been a breakthrough in research that has provided conclusive evidence that suggest the medical use of current Schedule I Psychoactive drugs such as 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) and Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) for treating various psychiatric disorders. These disorders range from severe anxiety disorders to Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Currently prescribed psychoactive drugs work by influencing chemicals in the brain such as dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin, the chemicals responsible for mood, behavior, cognition and perception. Classes of these drugs include but are not limited to amphetamines, anxiolytics, and antidepressants. While
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2 these medications provide relief to patients, there are instances where the use of Schedule I Drugs such as MDMA and LSD can provide therapeutic relief when used alongside current accepted medications and/or therapy. The Neuron: A nerve cell, also known as a neuron is the basic functioning unit of the central nervous system (CNS). Neurons communicate between each other by releasing a neurotransmitter. Charles Sherrington was a British Physiologist that “coined” the word synapse when he was referring to junction between neurons. He originated it from the Greek word synapto which means “to clasp” (Meyer, Quenzer, 78 ) . The only magnification technology available to him at the time were simple compound light microscopes. As technology progressed, scientists were able to develop and use the electron microscope. This allowed us to see that the process occurs unidirectional, beginning at the presynaptic cell and ending at the postsynaptic cell. They transmit their signals via a synaptic cleft. The brain is composed of three different types of synapses connections. The most common one is the axodendritic synapse which is the communication between the terminal end (Axon) extending from the neuron of the presynaptic cell to meet the dendrite of the postsynaptic cell (Refer to Figure 2 in Appendix for SEM photo) (Meyer, Quenzer, 78 ) . The dendrite is similar to an axon, but the dendrite receives singles while the axon sends them; this pathway does not apply in all cases. Axiomatic synapses function by making a connection between a nerve terminal and nerve cell body while axoaxonic synapses function by allowing one axon synapsing on the terminal end of another axon. This synapse allows for the presynaptic neuron to alter the release of neurotransmitters from the postsynaptic neuron. This phenomenon is known as presynaptic inhibition (Meyer, Quenzer, 78 ) . There are
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Valerio 1
Pasquale Valerio
WRT 204 Professor Ligi
Paper #3 Research
May 3, 2016
Psychopharmacology: An Approach to using Schedule I Psychoactive Drugs
In Medicine with Neurological Applications...

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