"It is true, and thus the question of whether it is sad or happy has no meaning whatever."
Bernhard Schlink

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Thursday, June 10, 2004

Stinky and Drinky, Continued 

It's not usually much fun to be a research subject. Yeah, if you're human, they pay you and maybe you get a cookie or something, but you also have to get poked and prodded (not usually in the good way). Animal subjects are just sortof there. It might, however, have been fun to be the worms tested in this experiment, as they were gotten repeatedly drunk. The experiment searched for genetic clues to varying alcohol tolerance, and found one in the form of NPR-1, the C. Elegans version of a Neuropeptide Y receptor. NPY has been associated with alcoholism in humans, so this is promising. They found that NPR-1 was more active in worms with higher sensitivity to alcohol. Given that it seems to be a receptor gene, I hope to see alcohol and GABA (among other) binding assays published shortly after this.

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