Saturday, June 24, 2006

(see *comments below)

Melanocortin receptor agonists

Here's an entirely different avenue of brain research on the melanocortin system which regulates energy balance. All kinds of energy! Drugs that stimulate these receptors (agonists) may effectively treat obesity, eating disorders, and sexual dysfunction. Drugs that block these receptors may be a wonderful boon to persons losing lean body mass due to cancer or AIDS.

A melanocortin receptor agonist known thus far as Bremelanotide is in phase 2 clinical studies for both male and female sexual dysfunction. This substance is administered via a nasal spray. 67% of those women who snorted the real deal reported increased sexual interest at home vs. 22% of the ladies who sniffed at placebos. Better yet, 72% in the active treatment group had genital stirrings compared with 39% in the control group.

Meanwhile, Arizona researchers are exploring the benefits of Melantan-II, another melanocortin receptor agonist. They used RigiScan monitoring to check out the effects on a group of men with erectile dysfunction. Those who used the drug scanned significantly stiffer than those who did not, with the treatment group maintaining tip rigidity for 38 minutes compared to a limp 3 minutes for the control group. The men on the drug suffered, however, from nausea and yawning significantly more than the control group. Small price to pay for the benefits?

*I actually found a picture of the RigiScan scanning, but felt it inappropriate for a family-friendly blog. Suffice it to say that if study participants scan rigid with this thing on, this is definitely a good drug!

1 comment:

James Marzilli said...

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