Medicine: New Painkiller

Time and again painkilling drugs have been touted as more potent than morphine and less likely to cause addiction, only to show, after careful trials, the same drawbacks as the invaluable but dangerous derivative of the opium poppy. Last week Secretary Arthur Flemming of Health, Education and Welfare got himself out on a limb by announcing as "an exciting breakthrough" the development of a new analgesic at the National Institutes of Health. Known so far only as NIH 7519, it appears, he said, to have "painkilling power at least ten times that of morphine." (By this phrasing, scientists do not mean...

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