This is your hamster on drugs

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NewScientist is reporting that a team of scientists at the University of Texas at Austin has discovered that Prozac, when used in low doses on juvenile hamsters, makes the creatures considerably more aggressive. In fact, the lightly-medicated hamsters initiate 40% more fights than those on placebos. Strangely enough, this only happens in cases of low doses; in higher dosages the juvenile hamsters appear calm and content. The study is particularly interesting, because it highlights the differences in pubescent and adult brains, and how the amount of the drug used affects how it binds to various serotonin receptors. Researchers are hoping that the studies will prompt more investigation into how the drug affects prescribed teenagers.

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October 16, 2006 - 7:25am
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