Recent studies show that a genetically modified strain of yeast can be used to ferment morphine when exposed to sugar. It seems that the Breaking Bad scenario can come true somewhere in the future, with us rather reading about it than becoming main characters in the script.
Morphine and similar painkillers can be made easily with a common DIY kit and very long hours spent on the process.
Opium poppies are not needed, you only need sugar that can be turned into morphine if you manipulate the substance found especially in yeast, in particular brewing processes.
Researchers from the University of Carolina Berkeley and Concordia University in Canada have started researching for means to produce and distribute cheaper and less addictive, safer and more effective painkillers.
They actually made it, after long study and analysis over the substances that can be processed to result in morphine.
Glucose is the keyword of this story. The researchers presented a complete guide to making your own morphine from sugar derivate. There have been years since scientists have tried to hack the DNA of yeast to mimic poppies, in order to benefit from more affordable results when it comes to painkillers.
Results were successful, it seems. They managed to genetically engineer the yeast and convert its sugar to a chemical that can easily turn into the commonly known morphine.
The process is anyhow very complex and time-consuming and for the future of DIY morphine we will need a great deal of know-how and technology. This being said, we’d better let this into the hands of experts than try to hack their knowledge and start researching for morphine made easy.
Anyhow, technology advances and with that, our means for evolution or destruction become more in handy. In the morphine case, experts declared it will be very difficult for people to bake it or brew it in the privacy of their homes, as the process is very long and inefficient.
Scientists are still years away from making morphine strong enough to kill pain, according to the new recipe.
Experts said it’s still extremely difficult for people to make homemade morphine because the process is inefficient. Even scientists are years away from lab-made morphine that’s strong enough to treat pain. With technology advancing, some point out that there could come a time when brewing morphine may be as simple as brewing beer.
Human imagination is however endless. We can start from a piece of news and create a very complex scenario with magnificent outcomes. That is precisely the reason why a group of researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and University of Alberta in Canada suggested that restrictions are necessary.
They called for restricting genetically modified yeast strains to licensed facilities because their new finding must present no risks whatsoever for the near future. They went even further with their appeal to justice, suggesting that current laws should be adapted to make the yeast strains illegal to distribute.
Long time will pass before we will actually be able to make our own painkillers. Or that time won’t come at all, if the system regulations prove to be efficient. As interesting as it sounds to make your own medicine in the small kitchen of your apartment, it is quite risky.
Breaking bad is just a nice TV series. Translated in real life, it could bring back all the pain that your DIY morphine is supposed to take away. To conclude, abuse must be avoided through consistent regulation.
Image Source: io9