Written by By Staff Writer
Kathryn Hudson, CNN
Human subjects who injected the same chemical recipe (that may be your grandmother’s beauty product) given it as a vaccine were less likely to get an allergic reaction than people who injected the same batch of chemicals as a booster.
In a new study published in the journal Clinical Science, researchers at the School of Pharmacy at Liverpool John Moores University determined that after a given group of volunteers used a dangerous dose of chemical D-dimer, whose top ingredient is something from your grandmother’s shampoo, the placebo group got half the reaction, if they used a high dose of the booster dose of the same chemical.
The study of study volunteers in England is believed to be the first in which such a product has been used as a booster. To researchers, the study showed that biohacking may not just save lives — it can prevent harm.
At the intersection of science and art
While the study showed how a diverse range of chemical diborides can induce different reactions in people, the study authors say the reaction — or lack thereof — is because of their carrier compounds, the ointments, lotions and gels.
“Biohacking is being actively sought because of the hype and the potential for providing more efficacious drugs to treat the body’s disease,” co-author Dr. David Bayley said in a statement. “Through our study the ethical question raised was whether it is okay to try and biohack medications with the chemical recipe being in the placebo product.”
Biohacking is the practice of making a product with an original and convenient synthetic chemical recipe. Participants do so using simple methods to mix and mix until the formula is right. If the answer is yes, they build a product they call “biogel.”
In the case of the study, each group of volunteers were injected with one of two different chemical recipes. In each group, they received either a high or low dose of diboride, which is the chemical used in many common shampoo products (most commonly conditioner, sunblock, even hairspray).
The scientists found that people who used the full high dose of diboride had one-third less reaction when they were given a high dose of the placebo. There were also no allergies in the group who used the full dose.
The study authors say the low dose had a “surprisingly benign” effect on people in the study.
“The surprising finding of this study was the lack of a prophylactic reaction,” lead author Dr. David Mitchell said in a statement. “The control group used in the study received a high dose of the compound, which was at least double the dose taken by the group who received a placebo.”
“In this case, this is the product that would give you an allergic reaction if you took it in high amounts,” he added.
More research is needed
Yet the researchers say more studies are needed to determine the ideal dosage of diboride for allergy prevention.
They also say they want to expand the study to look at how long it takes for the treatment to start working, as well as to examine whether over-the-counter painkillers can cause the problem.
Researchers say other similar studies are needed in other countries to learn the full possible effects of biohacking chemicals on human health.
Researchers are also suggesting the use of online forums to help people share and compare how their diboride products work with each other.