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Ecstasy Users Really Do Love Each Other ::

Reported by Olly @ Trackitdown on April 10, 2007

Australian scientists who tested ecstasy on rats announced this week that the rodents became unusually friendly and tended to ‘lie next to each other and chill out’, according to a report in the New Scientist.

Study chief Iain McGregor from University of Sydney speculated that the rats’ loved-up behaviour was caused by a surge in oxytocin, the hormone often associated with human couples falling in love.

“It’s interesting that guys on ecstasy feel more sensual than sexual,” Mr McGregor told the New Scientist. “It could be that raising oxytocin levels puts them in that sort of post-orgasmic state where they’re actually not very good at performing sexually but they feel really good about the person they’re with,” he suggested.

His comments struck a chord with the views of Bloc Party singer Kele Okereke who this week chatted about using E in an interview with Uncut magazine.

"The drug I do enjoy taking is ecstasy, which gives a real sense of euphoria,” the indie pop star said, “It makes your senses so much more acute. It makes music sound so powerful. And it makes touch incredibly sensual. You know, every touch is orgasmic,” (the singer also stressed he’d stopped using drugs over 12 months ago).

A previous study of oxytocin by University of Zurich researchers in 2005 (on humans) revealed that people given the hormone both promoted interaction between people, making them significantly more trusting and no longer frightened of betrayal. The effect was so strong, Nature Magazine reported, that unprincipled politicians could be easily tempted into spraying crowds with oxytocin at rallies, to manipulate voters’ trust.

"The scenario may be rather too close to reality for comfort, but those with such fears should note that current marketing techniques - for political and other products - may well exert their effects through the natural release of molecules such as oxytocin in response to well-crafted stimuli,” Dr Antonio Damasio of the Department of Neurology told Nature.

"Civic alarm at such abuses should have started long before this study,” he added (BBC) (‘When naturally loved-up and blissful on a richer cocktail of biochemicals than anything accessible today, our post-human successors will be able, not just to love everyone, but to be perpetually in love with everyone as well . . .’)

Jonty Skrufff (