From smoking to sumatriptan, researchers present important new findings on the impacts of drug metabolism

LOS ANGELES -- Pharmacologists from across the country and around the world will offer more than 350 presentations during the American Society for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics annual meeting March 15-18 at the Century Plaza Hotel & Tower. They include:

Why do Chinese-Americans smoke less than whites?

It's one of the major curiosities in smoking behavior -- why one smoker is content with one or two cigarettes a day but another craves a pack a day or more. New research from Rachel Tyndale, MD, and her colleagues at the University of Toronto indicates that people with defects in the CYP2A6 gene tend to smoke about one-third fewer cigarettes per day than people without the defects. People with CYP2A6 defects metabolize nicotine slower, so they don't smoke as much. Neal Benowitz, MD, and colleagues at the University of California at San Francisco report that slow metabolism of nicotine due to CYP2A6 defects may explain why Chinese-Americans smoke less than whites. (Oral presentations)

Sweet News for Sickle Cell Anemia Sufferers

The artificial sweetener aspartame has been reported to be effective in counteracting the effects of abnormal hemoglobin that reduce oxygen in red blood cells, causing sickle cell anemia. However, appropriate doses for clinical use have not been determined. In a new study of 24 patients, researchers from Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation and Oklahoma University Health Sciences Center have determined an amount that remains effective for eight hours or longer. The findings are good news for sickle cell anemia patients, as few treatment drugs are available. (Poster PI-55).

Quick Relief for Adolescents with Migraine

Adults plagued by migraine headache have been able to obtain quick relief with a nasal spray of the drug sumatriptan since 1997. But that doesn't help the 8 million children and adolescents who suffer from migraines since clinicians have been uncertain about amounts

Contact: Kirk Monroe
K-M Communications

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