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How it Works

The meth vaccine works by preventing methamphetamine from entering the nervous system. This is done by attacking the drug while it is still within the bloodstream using the bodys immune system.

Since the addict will no longer be taking the drug, it will no longer enter the brain. This will in turn take away the incentive for use of the recreational drug.

On their own, meth molecules are too small to trigger an antibody response from the immune system. So unfortunately a meth addict is at the mercy of this powerful drug. In order to get the immune system involved, the meth vaccine, also known as M6 will link the meth molecule to a larger molecule, known as a carrier. This will trigger an antibody response causing the body to take action against the harmful meth molecules.

Concerns

While this seems like a promising method to eliminate cocaine addiction, it remains to be seen how addicts will react to it. Addicts may try to consume copious amounts of the drug in order to adjust their bodies to it once more. The effects of such a move are still speculative. Researchers are still unsure whether such actions may defeat the cocaine vaccine.

Meth Withdrawal Symptoms

Considering the levels of pleasure triggered in the addicts brain, meth withdrawal symptoms can be quite serious. Some symptoms may subside quickly after quitting, but others may last for as long as a year. The latter include strong cravings, depression, and anxiety. Not to mention, the thoughts of suicide becomes higher with meth addiction.

How Do Vaccines Work

Vaccines introduce a tiny amount of a disease (usually in weakened or dead form) or something that resembles the chemical make-up of a disease into a persons bloodstream. This triggers the immune system to identify the illness and create antibodies which help to stop the particular disease in its tracks.

But cocaine being much smaller than a microbe is almost invisible to the human immune system once it enters the bloodstream. This is why the development of a cocaine vaccine for the past couple of years has involved attaching the vaccine to a virus for easy identification by the immune system.

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