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Longer Lasting Caffeine 51

falser writes "Caffeine addicted geeks everywhere may rejoice that scientists have discovered a protein that appears to be responsible for amplifying the caffeine buzz. It also makes the effects last longer. Just one question: how soon until we have a new generation of ultra powerful caffeine products?"
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Longer Lasting Caffeine

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  • by Mick D. ( 89018 ) on Thursday August 15, 2002 @09:28AM (#4076194) Homepage Journal
    The Chemical they are talking about (DARPP-32) is what makes as long lasting as it is in humans and mice. We already have it in our brains and it creates a positive feedback mechanism that keeps the stimulating effects of caffeine going.

    The mice without DARPP-32 reacted very minimally to ~6 cups of coffee worth of caffeine.
    • Today, Starbucks(SBUX) announced a $10 million dollar research grant prgram to alleviate the effects of the 'caffeine protein', DARPP-32, on the population.

      "We believe our customers are impeded from the full experience of our product by this deleterious, evil protein." an unamed spokesman said.

      "Our customers are asking for this." he continued, "It's the least we can do. That and make sure we have another super-grande-lofat-mocha-latte-ice" ready and waiting for them."

    • Yeah but the real question is - How many times does a rat need to pee before he finishes of six cups of coffee?

      Yeah yeah I know sex cups of coffee worth of caffeine bleh bleh.
  • by evalhalla ( 581819 ) <elena,valhalla&gmail,com> on Thursday August 15, 2002 @09:42AM (#4076308) Homepage Journal

    From the article it seems that the proteine is already in the human (or mice's) brain, and that it prolonges the effect of caffeine, but the effect of adding such proteine in the body directly aren't clear. Maybe it has more or less the same effect of caffeine, maybe if you take it together with caffeine the body feels that there is already enough of it and you have the (gulp!) opposite effect. So one of the few researchs that could have helped caffeine-addicted people ends helping those sad "decaffeinated" people out there, and this is not good. :)

    Me, I'll just stick to real coffee and use chocolate to enhance the effect of caffeine.

    By the way, I wonder whether the big number of people in favour of "caffeinated" as opposed do "decaffeinated" in the pool has something to do with people from slashdot. :)

  • by Peter T Ermit ( 577444 ) on Thursday August 15, 2002 @09:54AM (#4076397)
    A 32,000-dalton protein tends to get digested rather than passing directly into the protein, so you'd have to administer it intravenously. And then it has to get past the blood-brain barrier. Even if you got it directly into the brain it's far from obvious that it would have the effect you like.

    Sorry, no Jolt++ for you.

  • I have to drink massive quantities of strong coffee to feel anything. It's effect on me is mostly psychological: "... ah, that first cup of warm coffee in the morning shakes off the cold of getting out of bed..." ('course I now live in Texas, where it can be 95F at 6:00AM, but you get the idea).

    Perhaps I have a genetic mutation that causes this protein to not be present. Researchers also said that it may play a role in enhancing the effects of cocaine and amphetemines. If coke's reputation weren't so dangerous, it might be worth snorting a small line to see if I was immune to that too (though I do not indulge in illicit drugs for recreational purposes). Of course the U.S.'s "War on Drugs" makes such research practically impossible. Perhaps people with an excess of this protein are more likely to become addicted to coke. Certainly formal research in this area might go a long way toward understanding the chemical basis for certain drug addictions.

  • by kiick ( 102190 ) on Thursday August 15, 2002 @10:50AM (#4076830)
    Wouldn't it be really convenient to just slap on a caffiene patch in the morning and forget about it? I'm sure there are times when, for whatever reasons (medical, maybe) drinking lots of coffee/coke is not advisable. We need a patch!
  • by Hoi Polloi ( 522990 ) on Thursday August 15, 2002 @11:04AM (#4076949) Journal
    I've already switched to methamphetamines!
  • aren't affected by caffiene. I used to drink a tall glass (16oz) coke or coffee before going to bed. People used to look at me like I'm crazy, asking me "How can I sleep with that much caffiene?" It might be that those people don't have the protein. Could be an interesting research topic.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    IIIIII'''vvvveeeee tttrrriiieeeddd iiittt.... IIII rrrreeeeeallllyyy ddddiiiinnn'''tttt fffffeeeelll aaaaannnnyyy eeeeffffeeeccccttttssss.......
  • This is *twitch* exactly what I *twitch* need. My *jerk, twitch* caffiene isn't strong *twitch, eyes roll back in head* strong enough. Now where did I put that 64 ounce coffee mug?
    • Now where did I put that 64 ounce coffee mug?
      From alt.sysadmin.recovery, back when usenet was still really cool:
      "I used to drink 6 cups of coffee in the morning and 6 in the afternoon.
      This worried my cow orkers. Now I've cut down to 4.

      Took me ages to find a cup that big"

  • by Deagol ( 323173 ) on Thursday August 15, 2002 @02:21PM (#4078700) Homepage
    A few years ago, I was researching the ACE "stack" (Asprin, Caffeine, and Ephedra). This is often used to either: a) loose weight; or b) increase effectiveness of strength training. L-Tyrosine is an amino acid which, when added to this mix (or caffeine alone), prolongs its effects and reduces the "jitters". So go visit your local health food store for similar stuff.

    Never tried it myself, though.

  • A thread about caffeine posted at 9:35 AM the last day of LinuxWorld...who's gonna be awake to read it?
  • HyperCaffeine!? Oh man! I can't take this kind of pressure!
  • Eat grapefruit. (Score:4, Informative)

    by digitaltraveller ( 167469 ) on Friday August 16, 2002 @06:05AM (#4081551) Homepage
    Seriously. The naringin in grapefruit prevents the breakdown of xanthines in the liver. The net effect is that certain pharmacological substances last longer. It works with other drugs too. It can conceivably contribute to OD-type situations as well. Also, as someone above said, the amino acid tyrosine also will potentiate the effects, as will other substances. Bodybuilders use this for dieting and have known about this for years. They are after all mostly walking lab experiments []

Executive ability is deciding quickly and getting somebody else to do the work. -- John G. Pollard