Monday, July 14, 2008

The benefits of nicotine

Research suggests that nicotine may help alleviate or delay the onset of Alzheimer's.
Professor Ian Stolerman, from King's College in London, who led the studies, said that such treatments could offer "relief" to dementia patients, tens of thousands of whom are diagnosed in Britain every year.

Prof Stolerman said: "The substances we call drugs, in the majority of cases, actually do have a mixture of beneficial and harmful effects and nicotine is no exception in this."

Prof Stolerman started his research more than 10 years ago, initially not expecting to find that nicotine would have much effect on the brain's ability to concentrate.

His studies prove that the nicotine is more effective than other popular stimulants like caffeine at enhancing the brain's attention span.

His research suggests that the relatively small effect that nicotine has on healthy people would be greatly magnified in dementia sufferers.

The effect of the treatments could allow Alzheimer's sufferers to delay the onset of the disease for months, he believes.
Read the whole article. It wouldn't surprise me if Stolerman gets slammed for suggesting that nicotine might have beneficial effects, but we should be grasping at every straw we can find when it comes to Alzheimer's (in my opinion).

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