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Opium poppy analysis

Opium poppy analysis

G350/0594

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Credit

PHILIPPE PSAILA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PHILIPPE PSAILA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Opium poppy analysis. Scientist analysing the alkaloid content and dry matter yield of opium poppy seed heads (Papaver somniferum). This poppy is the source of opium, a narcotic resin that contains the alkaloids morphine and codeine. These are used by the pharmaceutical industry as painkillers (analgesics). Opium can be refined to yield pure heroin, an illegal drug that induces feelings of warmth and euphoria. Frequent use leads to an increase in tolerance and addiction. Photographed in France.

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