Researchers have developed a compound that could potentially
serve as a painkiller, with particular utility for East Asians with an
alcohol-metabolizing enzyme mutation.
Pain from inflammation sidelines thousands of people each
year. Many face a tough choice: deal with the pain, take a potentially
addictive opioid or use a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug that may increase
risk for cardiovascular disease or gastrointestinal bleeding.
According to the researchers at the Stanford University
the compound is nonaddictive and safe for the heart and
gastrointestinal system that reduces inflammatory pain in mice and rats. They
call the compound Alda-1.
"Finding a new pain medication is important because we need
a safer drug. There are several deaths happening from prescription opiate
overdoses a year alone," said Daria Mochly-Rosen, professor of chemical and
Mochly-Rosen is senior author of the paper, and former
Stanford postdoctoral scholars Vanessa Zambelli, PhD, and Eric Gross, MD, PhD,
are the lead authors. A paper describing the researchers' findings was
published in the magazine Science Translational Medicine