Words to Know

Analgesic A compound that relieves pain without loss of consciousness. Arthritis Inflammation of the joints. Narcotic A drug that depresses the central nervous system and is usually addictive. Opium A natural product of the opium poppy, Papaver somniferum. Cutting the immature pods of the plant allows a milky liquid to seep out and be collected. Air-dried, this is crude opium. Steroid A group of organic compounds that belong to the lipid family and that include many important biochemical...

Scientific Foundations

Cells are the building blocks of an animal's body. All parts of an animal, including skin, hair, and bone are made of cells. In the nucleus (the part of the cell containing the information needed for cell reproduction) of each cell is deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). DNA, also referred to as genes, contains instructions that determine the physical traits of a living thing. Animals, just like humans, inherit half of their DNA from their mother, and half from their father. In nature, when a sperm...

Current Issues

At first, corticosteroids were thought to be a miracle drug because they worked quickly and powerfully for many conditions. Since then, many lives have been saved with corticosteroid treatment. But, as the years passed, it became clear that these powerful drugs also produced unwanted side effects. The most common side effects are weight gain, high blood pressure, thinning of the bones, increased risk of having diabetes (a disease in which the body cannot process blood sugars), increased risk of...

Insulin Paved the Way for Biotechnology

The ability to deliberately insert the genes from one organism into the genome of another organism only came about in 1973. Almost immediately, researchers and commercial biotechnology companies recognized the potential of DNA technology in the manufacture of insulin. While the insulin obtained from pigs and cows was life-saving for diabetics, allergic reactions were possi ble. By harnessingthe bacterium Escherichia coli to express the inserted human gene for insulin, a plentiful and profitable...

Development

In 1948, American chemist Edward Calvin Kendall (1886-1972) and American physician Philip Showalter Hench (1896-1965) discovered a compound that had anti-inflammatory activity and reversed the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis (a disease that causes painful joints). This compound, which they named cortisone, was a form of corticosteroid. Their patient, a middle-aged woman with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), was suffering from severe pain and joint swelling. She was given a series of experimental...

Description

Painkillers, also called analgesics, are medicines that help relieve pain. There are many different types of painkillers. The most common types of painkillers include anti-inflammatory drugs, non-narcotics, and opioids narcotics . Anti-inflammatory drugs reduce swelling and soreness. They are often used to treat muscle, bone, and joint pain. People with osteoarthritis or arthritis diseases that cause joint pain and bone changes sometimes take anti-inflammatory drugs. Anti-inflammatory...

Contents

Words to Anti-Rejection Drugs 5 15 19 24 28 Blood-Clotting Factors 37 52 Chemotherapy Drugs 61 74 83 Cystic Fibrosis Drugs 87 96 Enzyme Replacement Therapy 116 Forensic DNA Testing 121 129 Genetic Testing, Medical 144 Genetically Modified Foods 152 157 Germline Gene Therapy 161 Heart Disease Drugs 168 Human Genome Project 176 Human Growth Hormone 180 Insulin, Recombinant Human 185 Multiple Sclerosis Drugs 200 214 223 227 Somatic Cell Therapy 241 Therapeutic Cloning 267 281 285 291 Alfalfa,...