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Medical Morphine and endorphin

  1. Dec 28, 2006 #1
    Can you synthesize morphin and endolphin?
    Can you consume them?
    Are these two chemicals legal?
    Are they harmful?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 30, 2006 #2
    Endophin is not consumed - it is produced noramlly by the body!... It is what is known as an "endogenous opioid"... It is not harmful and its action is to cause analgesia (pain relief)... It does this by binding to opioid receptors, which inhibit nerve impulses in the pain pathway (spinothalamic pathway)...

    Morphine is a synthetic opioid... It is used clinically in order in order to treat severe pain... It again acts by does this by binding to opioid receptors, which inhibit nerve impulses in the pain pathway (spinothalamic pathway)...

    Morphine and heroin (diacetylmorphine) are addictive substances... They cause the release of another neurotransmitter called dopamine, which activates reward centres in the brain and this causes psychological dependence - i.e. cravings for the drug...

    Interestingly, using morphine or diamorphine clinically has very low levels of dependence... This has lead to the theory that pain inhibits reward centres in the brain...
  4. Jan 9, 2007 #3


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    A well stated answer, Revenged. I will just add that there is not just one "endorphin" but instead it is a term for an entire class of compounds, which, as Revenged mentioned, are referred to as endogenous opioids in the scientific literature. These include compounds such as enkaphalin, dynorphin and endomorphin.

    Also, since the question of legality was not answered, morphine is a controlled substance, which means it can only be legally obtained through a prescription, for medical purposes, or appropriate licensing from the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), such as for research purposes.
  5. Jan 10, 2007 #4
    Yes quite right... I was thinking of beta-endophin, which binds to mu receptors...

    and as to the question of legality... you can get coedine without presciption for cough medicine and that is a weak opioid... so if you take enough of it - you'll get the same effect as morphine...
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