Though the codeine we take today is made synthetically, small amounts of codeine are actually found in the opium poppy.
About 8% of the population is unable to metabolise codeine, and a small number metabolise it at a much larger extent.
What will happen to immigration, wages and the economy has been discussed at length. But the price of drugs may also be affected.
After years of complaints, will the British Army now use controversial anti-malarial as a drug of last resort?
The yellow in Van Gogh’s Starry Night looks like symptoms of foxglove extract overdose.
Many suspect Van Gogh suffered from foxglove extract overdose due to the yellow halos in his paintings and his portrait of his physician holding the plant.
What the doctor ordered?
Pills by Shutterstock
How new medicines subsidised by individual nations in the EU is a complicated business.
Harvesting rooibos in South Africa’s Suid Bokkeveld.
Good models have been developed to ensure benefit sharing in the biodiversity business. But major challenges prevent developing countries from translating this into social justice.
Spider silk is just one of the ways nature has inspired innovation.
Silk image from www.shutterstock.com
Drugs, new materials and even more creative uses: biodiversity is full of potential.
Happy pictures make people believe drugs are safer and more effective.
Some advertising content bypasses regulations to promote unrealistic beliefs about drugs.
Events disturbingly similar to the thalidomide tragedy continue to occur.
Tighter regulations of medicines and devices have prevented countless deaths and disabilities. But regulation can't always protect us from harm.
World Health Organisation director-general Margaret Chan at the launch of a new global campaign against antibiotic resistance.
More than 700,000 people die each year from antibiotic-resistant infections. The World Health Organisation is trying to end the age of ignorance to protect this global common good.
We need new ways to pay drug producers if we are to make treatments available where they're really needed.
Taking off the label to charge more.
Pills by Shutterstock
Pharmaceutical companies aim to make a profit, but it took an industry insider to blow the whistle on some exorbitant drug costs the NHS was paying.
The goal is to grow and activate drugs by a process as simple as making tea.
This project offers the tantalising possibility that plants containing drugs, such as agents to treat HIV, could be farmed on a small scale at low cost by communities that need them most.
Bashing drugmakers can be an easy way to score political points.
Clinton, who named drug companies among her enemies in this week's debate, is pushing populist-inspired policies that could hamper the flow of new medicines.
A deadly meeting? The potentially lethal viper, Echis carinatus.
News that a leading manufacturer will cease making a well-known antivenom is not actually new.
Off-label use is when an approved medicine is prescribed for a different reason, at a different dose, or in different patient groups than originally intended.
The off-label use of medicines is not illegal and it doesn't mean regulators have specifically "disapproved" its use. But there are a number of issues to consider before using a medicine off-label.
Generic medicine is essential to regions like the Southern African Development Community where HIV is endemic and cheap drugs are needed.
The generic drug industry has become essential to developing countries that need access to cheaper drugs to treat their heavy burdens of communicable diseases.
Insulin, which is used for controlling diabetes and has been in the market for 30 years, was the first biologic.
Biologics are widely accepted as the most effective way of treating certain diseases. They have become the fastest-growing class of therapeutic compounds, with about 300 now available for human use.
Combination drugs are considered an innovation of India's medicines industry but they are not as safe as they should be.
Horse-rider Potso Seoete makes an HIV-drug delivery to the Molika-liko health clinic in a remote district of Lesotho.
Medicine shortages in southern Africa, particularly of anti-retrovirals for HIV patients, require urgent attention. A regional approach to distribution has been tried in South America and could work for the region.