Study reveals how mucus tames microbes

More than 200 square meters of our bodies—including the digestive tract, lungs, and urinary tract—are lined with mucus. In recent years, scientists have found some evidence that mucus is not just a physical barrier that ...

Scientists are decoding the genetic mechanisms of aging

The discovery in the 1990s that a mutation in a single gene of an experimental worm could double its lifespan set off a stampede of research on the molecular biology of aging and triggered hopes that drug therapies or other ...

Brain tissue kept alive for weeks on an artificial membrane

Researchers at the RIKEN Center for Biosystems Dynamics Research in Japan have developed a new system for keeping tissue viable for long-term study once transferred from an animal to a culture medium. The new system uses ...

Scientists invent new technology to streamline drug discovery

George Mason University researchers have discovered the exact location where two proteins responsible for hiding cancer cells from the immune system bind. This discovery provides a novel approach to developing new cancer ...

Novel compound interrupts malaria parasite's lifecycle

An international group of researchers has proven that a molecule called TCMDC-135051 can selectively inhibit a protein that is essential to the lifecycle of Plasmodium falciparum, one of the parasites that causes malaria.

Shapeshifting receptors may explain mysterious drug failures

For sugar to taste sweet and for coffee to be stimulating, or even for light to be seen, first they all need to land on a G protein-coupled receptor. Ubiquitous and diverse, these receptors are a cell's chemical detection ...

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Drug

A drug, broadly speaking, is any substance that, when absorbed into the body of a living organism, alters normal bodily function. There is no single, precise definition, as there are different meanings in drug control law, government regulations, medicine, and colloquial usage.

In pharmacology, Dictionary.com defines a drug as "a chemical substance used in the treatment, cure, prevention, or diagnosis of disease or used to otherwise enhance physical or mental well-being." Drugs may be prescribed for a limited duration, or on a regular basis for chronic disorders.

Recreational drugs are chemical substances that affect the central nervous system, such as opioids or hallucinogens. They may be used for perceived beneficial effects on perception, consciousness, personality, and behavior. Some drugs can cause addiction and habituation.

Drugs are usually distinguished from endogenous biochemicals by being introduced from outside the organism.[citation needed] For example, insulin is a hormone that is synthesized in the body; it is called a hormone when it is synthesized by the pancreas inside the body, but if it is introduced into the body from outside, it is called a drug.[citation needed]

Many natural substances such as beers, wines, and some mushrooms, blur the line between food and drugs, as when ingested they affect the functioning of both mind and body.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA