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Medicine Science

Austria's Mobile Drug Lab Could Test Street-Drug Effects, Too 34

Posted by timothy
from the gute-hauskiepink-siel-uff-uproofal dept.
carmendrahl writes "In Austria, people can submit their street drugs to a lab-on-a-bus to ensure they got what they paid for. The government is using the bus to track emergence of new variants of bath salts and other drugs. Now, researchers have developed a test they'd like to add to the bus's offerings: it assesses drug action (full paper) instead of just reporting chemical structure."
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Austria's Mobile Drug Lab Could Test Street-Drug Effects, Too

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  • DanceSafe (Score:5, Informative)

    by Knile (18599) on Monday December 17, 2012 @06:46AM (#42312589)

    DanceSafe [dancesafe.org] has been doing their form of this for years in the US.

    • Yeah, but don't you have to mail a sample in and wait a while before you get results from DanceSafe? This is a mobile lab that gives you quick results. That is the part that is unique, not just the testing part.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 17, 2012 @06:50AM (#42312613)

    As an Austrian, I can confirm that we've got a huge drug problem. But it is not really designer drugs, coke or heroin, it is simply Alcohol. Beer and Wine (as well as the cider-like "Most" in my region) have a long tradition, and are the socially accepted ways of killing yourself slowly with chemicals. Unlike illegal drugs there are strong economic incentives to keep it that way, though. Illegal drugs are really negible problem, as terrible it may be to the individual.

  • by m.shenhav (948505) on Monday December 17, 2012 @07:09AM (#42312671)
    as well as a Recreational one..... I support a policy of informing users instead of prosecuting them. Legal prosecution and social stigmatization at no way to encourage people to learn about whats out there and make informed decisions.

    Living in Vienna for 3 years I witnessed a relatively tolerant drug policy. Personally I feel that this approach prevents a lot of conflict, paranoia and alienation that occurs in less tolerant places. That the city has a culture of drug use while maintaining its number 1 position in several rankings for living quality, could be construed as corroborating evidence.
    • by Runaway1956 (1322357) on Monday December 17, 2012 @08:00AM (#42312847) Homepage Journal

      Shhhh! You're going to cause a lot of people's strokes here! Any city with a drug culture must be a hellhole to live in. Our government has been telling us that for decades, so it has to be true!

    • Depends on the drug.

      Austria, and Vienna especially, has a rather interesting approach to drugs. Sure, everything's illegal, but there are grades of prosecution. Pot? *shrug* Crack? *sound of door being kicked down*

      I could live with that.

    • Correlation is not causation. Repeat this until you understand it.

      Of course, this is in reply to a pro-drug message, so it will be ignored and probably moderated down, whereas if it were in reply to a less popular idea, would be moderated to +5. Funny how that works, isn't it?

  • Nothing special (Score:5, Informative)

    by Phobos Gekko (1575107) <phobos.gekko@[ ]il.com ['gma' in gap]> on Monday December 17, 2012 @07:23AM (#42312713)
    As per the abstract, compounds to be identified are done so with a mass spectrometer - nothing special if you're used to working in an organic chemistry lab. The identified molecule is then checked against a database of other known molecules, where if it happens to be new and unidentified, a test is then performed to see how markedly it affects serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine. From this, you are able to /roughly/ infer what actions and side-effects it may cause to the user. That's the gist of it!
  • by wonkey_monkey (2592601) on Monday December 17, 2012 @07:32AM (#42312733) Homepage

    new variants of bath salts

    Note that that should be "bath salts" in quotes. It's a range of drugs that are sold under the guise of bath salts despite having no use as such.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      new variants of bath salts

      Note that that should be "bath salts" in quotes. It's a range of drugs that are sold under the guise of bath salts despite having no use as such.

      So that's what I've been doing wrong, thanks!

      • by swillden (191260)

        new variants of bath salts

        Note that that should be "bath salts" in quotes. It's a range of drugs that are sold under the guise of bath salts despite having no use as such.

        So that's what I've been doing wrong, thanks!

        What, using "bath salts" as bath salts? Or using bath salts as "bath salts"?

        • With illegal drugs, they have already been government certified (class A, B or C) and they are only available on the black market, where there is no incentive to hide what they really are (assuming they are not cut).

          With drugs that have not been formally classified, this is legally a gray area, they are technically sold "not for human consumption" and thus marketed "legally" as "bath salts", "plant feeder", "room odorizer" etc... a form of legal plausible deniability for the manufacturer and the shop.

          Due to

  • If we got weed, we could lesser the use of alcohol, which is massively overused here.

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