The Effects of Common Painkillers

The Effects of Common Painkillers

A recent study out of Yale posted in the journal Immunity explores the effects of common painkillers like ibuprofen and aspirin on diseases like heart disease and cancer. “Some NSAIDs prevent heart disease while others cause it, some NSAIDs have been linked to decreased incidence of colorectal cancer, and various NSAIDs can have a wide range of effects on asthma.” The study used cell cultures and mice to find that “only some NSAIDs — including indomethacin, which is used to treat arthritis and gout, and ibuprofen — also activate a protein called nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2, or NRF2, which, among its many actions, triggers anti-inflammatory processes in the body.” This is an important finding because, as Anna Eisenstein, an instructor at the Yale School of Medicine, explains, NSAIDs are so commonly used that knowing all of the mechanisms in which they impact our bodies is important. More research needs to be done but it’s a large step in the direction of fully understanding the implications and potential new applications of NSAIDs. 


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