In a new study, researchers may have proven how much people love coffee, tea, chocolate, soda and energy drinks.
The team worked with various biomedical suppliers to purchase 18 batches of supposedly pure human blood serum pooled from multiple donors.
Biomedical suppliers get their blood from blood banks, who pass along inventory that’s nearing its expiration date.
All 18 batches tested positive for caffeine. Also, in many of the samples, the researchers found traces of cough medicine and an anti-anxiety drug.
The findings point to the potential for contaminated blood transfusions, and also suggest that blood used in research isn’t necessarily pure.
The research was conducted by scientists at Oregon State University.
The purpose of the study was to test a new method for evaluating the potential for interactions between botanical dietary supplements and drug metabolism.
The method involves rapid protein precipitation and ultra high-pressure liquid chromatography and is being used to support clinical studies.
In the clinical studies, participants take a drug cocktail along with a botanical supplement—hops, licorice or red clover—to see if the supplement causes any of the drugs to be metabolized differently than they otherwise would.
In addition to caffeine, the research also involved testing pooled serum for alprazolam, an anti-anxiety medicine sold under the trade name Xanax; dextromethorphan, an over-the-counter cough suppressant; and tolbutamide, a medicine used to treat type 2 diabetes.
All of the pooled serum was free of tolbutamide, but eight samples contained dextromethorphan and 13 contained alprazolam.
It possibly means that if you ever need a blood transfusion, your odds of also receiving caffeine, cough medicine, and an anti-anxiety drug are pretty good.
The team says that from a ‘contamination’ standpoint, caffeine is not a big worry for patients, though it may be a commentary on current society.
But the other drugs being in there could be an issue for patients, as well as posing a problem for those of us doing this type of research because it’s hard to get clean blood samples.
One author of the study is Richard van Breemen.
The study is published in the Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis.
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