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Safer opioid drugs could treat pain and save lives

(American College of Neuropsychopharmacology) Opioid drugs are the most widely prescribed and effective type of pain medication. But they are highly addictive and have some unpleasant and potentially deadly side effects. Now a group of researchers, led by Dr. Laura Bohn at The Scripps Research Institute, may have found a way to make opioids safer by separating the drugs' pain relieving effects from their most dangerous side effect, respiratory suppression, which, in very severe cases, causes patients to stop breathing and to die.
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