Hyraceum shows GABA-benzodiazepine receptor affinity

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In Gamkaskloof, traditional healers have a special cure for epilepsy — hyraceum, the fossilised urine and faeces of rock hyraxes, a small African herbivore. Now, research has revealed why it seems to be rather effective. Hyraceum from the region is shown to have an affinity for GABA-benzodiazepine receptors, which inhibits seizures when compounds bind to it. While it’s still unknown which compounds in the hyraceum are responsible, it seems it might be related to the hyraxes’ diet, as the receptors were found in only four of the fourteen samples taken. Read full article here

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