What Dogs and Mice Have Taught Us About Drugs


Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov was really onto something when he trained dogs to associate being fed with the sound of a bell.  His discovery of the “conditioned response” in animals has now lead to a potentially seismic change in the way drugs are administered to humans.

Imagine if you could drastically reduce the dosage of your medication and yet still produce the same physiological effects in your body.   For example, if you suffer from arthritis, you could take your pain medication only once a month instead of every day, and yet remain pain free the entire time.  And you would do this just by drinking a glass of oddly coloured milk each day.

There would be a trial period first, where you gradually condition your body into producing the effects of the drug by yourself by taking your medication with the oddly coloured milk each day.  Over time, your body would begin to associate the pain medication with the oddly coloured milk, and would anti inflammatories eventually produce the same anti-inflammatory effects with the milk by itself.  No medication needed.

Most doctors and scientists are still very skeptical that this could work, and of course, drug companies absolutely hate the idea.  However, a number of scientific studies have already produced such a conditioned response in mice, and in a select few cases, it has been done with humans as well.   Much research has yet to be done, but the results are very intriguing.  Just imagine being able to produce the effects of drugs without the drugs themselves.


Excerpt:  “Ader’s result was revolutionary because it showed that learned associations don’t only affect responses – such as nausea, heart rate and salivation – that scientists knew were regulated by the brain. His rats proved that these associations influence immune responses too, to the point at which a taste or smell can make the difference between life and death. The body’s fight against disease, his experiment suggested, is guided by the brain”.