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Tag: pills

Robot Pills And The Future Of How Medication Is Delivered

For years society has struggled to develop an efficient way to deliver complex drugs through the body. But this is not the case anymore; thanks to biomedical engineer Shriya Srinivasan we can take pills for medicines that we would not usually be able to. For example, Cancer drugs, Diabetes drugs, and many other drugs that require a shot. 

Smallpox vaccine

“say goodbye to painful shots”

According to Megan Rosen’s article, Shriya Srinivasan’s invention of the robot would be “a huge game changer” in the medical industry. Before her invention, pills struggled to enter the bloodstream because of the mucus that would trap the pill from entering the stomach acids so it could dissolve. However, with the Robot pill, we can overcome the mucus and enter the stomach, where the acid will dissolve, and the desired drug will enter the bloodstream.

Robot pill in action video link

The robot pills use unique engineering methods to break up the mucus in a path. Some of these methods consist of surface grooves and small torpedo fins to break up the mucus in the human body. But, there is only one problem; breaking up mucus is a difficult task. This is because mucus has proteins, specifically glycoproteins, bonded strongly by covalent bonds. Covalent bonds are the strongest because they share an even amount of electrons. The strong covalent bonds make it difficult to break up the substance, which is where the fin and surface grooves come to break up the bonds of the strong mucus proteins.

Human alfa2beta2 hemoglobin

With new inventions, people save lots of time and pain. Society will no longer have to inject shots into the body but rather take a pill. That said, we ultimately conclude that robotic pills are the future of medicine.


Should Scientists Continue With the Production of Merck’s Covid-19 Pill?

In a recent clinical trial to test Merck’s Covid-19 pill, Scientists have found that the drug showed early signs of preventing hospitalization and death from the coronavirus in people at high risk of severe disease. Merck’s Covid-19 pill would be taken orally to prevent the replication of certain RNA viruses to prevent the spread of coronavirus. The drug molnupiravir was the driving factor of this pill that would allow it to show such high results. The antiviral medication works by making mutations in viral RNA so that viruses are rendered noninfectious. Such mutations happen throughout the virus’s genetic genome.

Pill 3

A 48 percent reduction in the relative risk of hospitalization or death. Despite this, on November 26, Merck announced in a news release that when all the available data from the trial was in, the relative reduction risk fell to 30 percent. After being reviewed by the FDA, the scientists determined that the placebo group and the molnupiravir group were too similar to declare the drug effective. They came to a 13-10 split decision vote about whether the drug should be immediately sent out for emergency use. The vote and debate reflected a storm of uncertainty about the drug’s efficacy and who should use it. Not only was there a debate, but the panel also queried whether the drug could lead to an even more dangerous version of the coronavirus and whether it can cause growth delays in children or mutation in human DNA. The drug is an artificial RNA building block, a nucleotide, that can mimic cytosine and uracil bases. Some enzymes in human cells might convert those RNA subunits to a DNA building block, which may lead to mutations in human DNA, especially in blood cells.

“The potential for this drug to drive some very challenging variants into the public is of major, major concern,” said James Hildreth, an immunologist, and president of Meharry Medical College in Nashville. Merck representatives noted that it is doubtful because infectious viruses were no longer detected after five days of taking the drug dosage. In one of their studies, the company found seven patients who had changes in the coronavirus’s spike protein after taking molnupiravir. Still, there was no evidence that the viruses spread to other people.

The question of whether Merck’s Covid-19 Pill will work is still very unknown due to the symptoms it may cause and the side effects that come along with it. The question may never be answered due to the progressively changing varients of the coronavirus. We should continue testing this drug and modifying it to have the best outcome and the least amount of side effects. What do you think about these new drugs? What next steps should scientists take to make it available to the public? Should we release it to the public?

ADHD or just Stress?

Common pills for ADHD

Common pills for ADHD

            People tend to turn quickly to medication when a child is not doing well in school or is upset. The American Academy of Pediatrics has even lowered the age to 4 years old that children can be diagnosed with ADHD.  This is how drug companies market a “chemical imbalance” theory for children. However, people are turning to a new view.

Family stress is now seen as toxic to children and root of many emotional and behavioral problems. In a recent Parentlode column, Lisa Belkin from Huffington Post discussed this new view. Family therapists are now trying to help children by looking at their nurturing environment.

For example, a child named Paulie had a  teacher who believed he had ADHD because of his seemingly personality change overnight. When asked about it, he said he was worried about his father who had lost his job and was crying all day. How to fix this problem? Therapists are encouraging parents to reduce arguments at home, not  show their negative emotions in front of their children, and tell their children goods things about their days.

Parents can help their children’s stress by having a healthier communication style.  They also should be aware of keeping a healthy family structure. Spending time together can even help. If parents begin to drift and one parent is overly close to the child, this can place pressure on the child and cause them to develop problems, even autism or ADHD. Over the past couple of decades, drug companies have successfully convinced parents that pills will solve their childrens’ problems. Parents are starting to see past this. Parents are now starting to take on the role of fixing their children’s mental health and not giving them pills or sending them to child psychiatrists.

I chose this topic because I know many people that are taking medication for ADHD and similar diagnosis. I think it is interesting to see other alternatives to these drugs. Also, some of these drugs when combined, have side effects that are still unknown so I find it is interesting to see if there are other solutions.

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