Pattern Recognition - Selective Serotonin Retraction Enhancer
March 24th, 2014
09:39 am


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Selective Serotonin Retraction Enhancer

OK maybe I was trolling the audience a tiny bit there. Or myself.  Mostly I found the prospect of duelling inhibitors and enhancers to be hilarious, but reality is never so neat, as several interlocutors of fine taste and discernment quite rightly commented.

In fact, while the SSRIs do inhibit serotonin reuptake, this is probably not how they actually work; hell, it's not entirely clear that they work significantly better than sugar pills. Similarly, if you followed the link to the article on tianeptine, you saw that it's now thought to act via glutamate receptors, not serotonin.

Finally, while rational drug discovery has led to some very silly situations in psychopharmacology, it's been very successful in other areas, and psychopharmacology is really mindblowingly difficult, so it's not really fair to attack it the way I did.

Also I am a big dumb head. But I still think the pixie joke was good.

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(2 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:March 24th, 2014 04:05 pm (UTC)
Well, I think it's fair to attack it the way you did. And funny.

Homeopathy is also really mind-blowingly difficult, probably even impossible. Still funny to make fun of it, despite its veneer of rational process (just with a different, worse, set of axioms.) And similar efficacy.
[User Picture]
Date:March 25th, 2014 02:03 am (UTC)
Well, there's one very important application where something very similar to homeopathy does work: vaccination.

Even psychopharmacology has had some important successes on very nasty diseases like schizophrenia and bipolar.

There's probably an essay to be written in how risk aversion and control addiction strangle serendipity, though.
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