In an obvious publicity piece, the Daily Mail in Great Britain airs a story of a wine-loving man who slipped into dependency on alcohol and found a drug, Selincro (nalmefene) @$4.55 a pill that took away the pleasurable effects of alcohol. [Daily Mail Aug 9, 2016; European Medicines Agency]
But wait. We don’t hear a thing about Selincro in the U.S. It was approved in Europe in 2013.
In the U.S. researchers have demonstrated that a natural molecule obtained from the Asian raisin tree blocks the receptor on brain cells that is targeted by alcohol and therefore eliminates hangovers and virtually abolishes craving for alcohol. [Journal Neuroscience 2012] The molecule that does this is commercially available. [Blucetin.com] But the manufacturer is muzzled from saying much about it because it is a dietary supplement and can’t say it cures a disease like alcoholism. Do we really want to quell the plague of alcoholism?