A “trauma pill” could blot out memories of harrowing events for combat veterans and survivors of accidents or terrorism, say Canadian researchers.
Most memories decay naturally, but people under extreme stress pump an abnormal amount of stress hormones during the event — so the memories are stored differently, said Dr. Alain Brunet, professor of psychiatry at McGill University in Montreal.
“If you have (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) your memory is so fresh it’s as if the event is happening now,” he said. “For a person to have that vivid flashback certain hormones are released by the brain. If you can block these, the memory is weakened or even removed completely.”
Brunet and colleagues had 20 people suffering from PTSD recall their experiences as vividly as possible in therapy sessions, after being given doses of propranolol — a beta-blocker used to treat high blood pressure, angina and abnormal heart rhythms. Preliminary findings indicate the PTSD sufferers experienced fewer flashbacks and less severe symptoms after taking the drug.
(“Trauma Pill” — pre-fab band name)
When the money-losing WB and UPN networks announced that they were pulling the plug to form a single new broadcast network, many television veterans traced the roots of the decision back five years, when a fight over the fate of “Buffy The Vampire Slayer” drove what would prove to be a fatal stake through the WB’s heart.
The show, produced by 20th Century Fox Television, was a runaway hit with teenage girls. But in early 2001, the WB balked when Fox executives demanded $44 million to license a single season. That fall, the show shifted to UPN, and with it went the WB’s identity as the go-to destination for young viewers.
Now, as CBS Corp. and Time Warner Inc. develop the CW, their new jointly owned network, what killed the WB and UPN is a hot topic in the offices of TV executives all over town. In the end, many agree, the WB’s loss of “Buffy” â€” which breathed new life into the struggling UPN â€” set in motion a pitched battle for the coveted youth market that would eventually doom both networks…