How Was Alcohol Invented?

How Was Alcohol Invented
The Earliest Alcoholic Beverage in the World Chemical analyses recently confirmed that the earliest alcoholic beverage in the world was a mixed fermented drink of rice, honey, and hawthorn fruit and/or grape. The residues of the beverage, dated ca.7000–6600 BCE, were recovered from early pottery from Jiahu, a Neolithic village in the Yellow River Valley.

Dr. Patrick McGovernDr. Juzhong Zhang, University of Science and Technology of China Dr. Jigen Tang, Chinese Academy of Social SciencesDr. Zhiqing Zhang, Henan Institute of Cultural Relics and ArchaeologyDr. Gretchen R. Hall, Penn MuseumDr. Robert A. Moreau, U.S. Department of AgricultureDr. Alberto Nuñez, U.S. Department of AgricultureDr. Eric D. Butrym, Firmenich CorporationDr. Michael P. Richards, University of BradfordDr. Chen-shan Wang, Penn MuseumDr. Guangsheng Cheng, Chinese Academy of SciencesDr. Zhijun Zhao, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences Dr. Changsui Wang, University of Science and Technology of China

Chemical analyses of ancient organics absorbed, and preserved, in pottery jars from the Neolithic village of Jiahu, in Henan province, Northern China, have revealed that a mixed fermented beverage of rice, honey, and fruit was being produced as early as 9,000 years ago, approximately the same time that barley beer and grape wine were beginning to be made in the Middle East.

In addition, liquids more than 3,000 years old, remarkably preserved inside tightly lidded bronze vessels, were chemically analyzed. These vessels from the capital city of Anyang and an elite burial in the Yellow River Basin, dating to the Shang and Western Zhou Dynasties (ca.1250-1000 BCE), contained specialized rice and millet “wines.” The beverages had been flavored with herbs, flowers, and/or tree resins, and are similar to herbal wines described in the Shang dynasty oracle inscriptions.

The new discoveries, made by an international, multi-disciplinary team of researchers including the Penn Museum’s archaeochemist Dr. Patrick McGovern, provide the first direct chemical evidence for early fermented beverages in ancient Chinese culture, thus broadening our understanding of the key technological and cultural roles that fermented beverages played in China.

The discoveries and their implications for understanding ancient Chinese culture are published in the PNAS Early Edition (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences): by Patrick E. McGovern, Juzhong Zhang, Jigen Tang, Zhiquing Zhang, Gretchen R. Hall, Robert A. Moreau, Alberto Nuñez, Eric D. Butrym, Michael P.

Richards, Chen-shan Wang, Guangsheng Cheng, Zhijun Zhao, and Changsui Wang. Dr. McGovern worked with this team of researchers, associated with the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei, the Institute of Archaeology in Beijing, the Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology of Henan Province, the U.S.

  1. Department of Agriculture, the Firmenich Corporation, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig (Germany), and the Institute of Microbiology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Dr.
  2. McGovern first met with archaeologists and scientists, including his co-authors on the paper, in China in 2000, returning there in 2001 and 2002.

Because of the great interest in using modern scientific techniques to investigate a crucial aspect of ancient Chinese culture, collaboration was initiated and samples carried back to the U.S. for analysis. Chemical tests of the pottery from the Neolithic village of Jiahu was of special interest, because it is some of the earliest known pottery from China.

This site was already famous for yielding some of the earliest musical instruments and domesticated rice, as well as possibly the earliest Chinese pictographic writing. Through a variety of chemical methods including gas and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry, infrared spectrometry, and stable isotope analysis, finger-print compounds were identified, including those for hawthorn fruit and/or wild grape, beeswax associated with honey, and rice.

The prehistoric beverage at Jiahu, Dr. McGovern asserts, paved the way for unique cereal beverages of the proto-historic 2nd millennium BCE, remarkably preserved as liquids inside sealed bronze vessels of the Shang and Western Zhou Dynasties. The vessels had become hermetically sealed when their tightly fitting lids corroded, preventing evaporation.

  1. Numerous bronze vessels with these liquids have been excavated at major urban centers along the Yellow River, especially from elite burials of high-ranking individuals.
  2. Besides serving as burial goods to sustain the dead in the afterlife, the vessels and their contents can also be related to funerary ceremonies in which living intermediaries communicated with the deceased ancestor and gods in an altered state of consciousness after imbibing a fermented beverage.

“The fragrant aroma of the liquids inside the tightly lidded jars and vats, when their lids were first removed after some three thousand years, suggested that they indeed represented Shang and Western Zhou fermented beverages, ” Dr. McGovern noted. Samples of liquid inside vessels from the important capital of Anyang and the Changzikou Tomb in Luyi county were analyzed.

  1. The combined archaeochemical, archaeobotanical and archaeological evidence for the Changzikou Tomb and Anyang liquids point to their being fermented and filtered rice or millet “wines,” either jiu or chang, its herbal equivalent, according to the Shang Dynasty oracle inscriptions.
  2. Specific aromatic herbs (e.g., wormword), flowers (e.g., chrysanthemum), and/or tree resins (e.g., China fir and elemi) had been added to the wines, according to detected compounds such as camphor and alpha-cedrene, beta-amyrin and oleanolic acid, as well as benzaldehyde, acetic acid, and short-chain alcohols characteristic of rice and millet wines.

Both jiu and chang of proto-historic China were likely made by mold saccharification, a uniquely Chinese contribution to beverage-making in which an assemblage of mold species are used to break down the carbohydrates of rice and other grains into simple, fermentable sugars.

Yeast for fermentation of the simple sugars enters the process adventitiously, either brought in by insects or settling on to large and small cakes of the mold conglomerate (qu) from the rafters of old buildings. As many as 100 special herbs, including wormwood, are used today to make qu, and some have been shown to increase the yeast activity by as much as seven-fold.

For Dr. McGovern, who began his role in the Chinese wine studies in 2000, this discovery offers an exciting new chapter in our rapidly growing understanding of the importance of fermented beverages in human culture around the world. In 1990, he and colleagues Rudolph H.

  1. Michel and Virginia R.
  2. Badler first made headlines with the discovery of what was then the earliest known chemical evidence of wine, dating to ca.3500-3100 BCE, from Godin Tepe in the Zagros Mountains of western Iran (see “Drink and Be Merry!: Infrared Spectroscopy and Ancient Near Eastern Wine” in Organic Contents of Ancient Vessels: Materials Analysis and Archaeological Investigation, eds.W.R.

Biers and P.E. McGovern, MASCA Research Papers in Science and Archaeology, vol.7, Philadelphia: MASCA, University of Pennsylvania Museum, University of Pennsylvania). That finding was followed up by the earliest chemically confirmed barley beer in 1992, inside another vessel from the same room at Godin Tepe that housed the wine jars.

  1. In 1994, chemical testing confirmed resinated wine inside two jars excavated by a Penn archaeological team at the Neolithic site of Hajji Firuz Tepe, Iran, dating to ca.5400 BCE and some 2000 years earlier than the Godin Tepe jar. Dr.
  2. McGovern is author of Ancient Wine: The Search for the Origins of Viniculture (Princeton University Press, 2003).

Dr. McGovern’s research was made possible by support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Henry Luce Foundation, and the National Science Foundation (2000-2001; award BCS-9911128). The GC-MS analyses were carried out in the Chemistry Department of Drexel University through the kind auspices of J.P.

Honovich. Dr. McGovern also thanks the Institute of Archaeology in Beijing and Zhengzhou for logistical support and providing samples for analysis. Qin Ma Hui, Wuxiao Hong, Hsing-Tsung Huang, Shuicheng Li, Guoguang Luo, Victor Mair, Harold Olmo, Vernon Singleton, and Tiemei Chen variously advised on or facilitated the research.

Changsui Wang, chairperson of the Archaeometry program at the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei (Anhui Province) was untiring in his enthusiasm for the project, and personally accompanied Dr. McGovern on travels to excavations and institutes, where collaborations and meetings with key scientists and archaeologists were arranged.

How did humans start drinking alcohol?

How Was Alcohol Invented (Image credit: Minerva Studio/Shutterstock.com) Human ancestors may have begun evolving the knack for consuming alcohol about 10 million years ago, long before modern humans began brewing booze, researchers say. The ability to break down alcohol likely helped human ancestors make the most out of rotting, fermented fruit that fell onto the forest floor, the researchers said.

Therefore, knowing when this ability developed could help researchers figure out when these human ancestors began moving to life on the ground, as opposed to mostly in trees, as earlier human ancestors had lived. “A lot of aspects about the modern human condition — everything from back pain to ingesting too much salt, sugar and fat — goes back to our evolutionary history,” said lead study author Matthew Carrigan, a paleogeneticist at Santa Fe College in Gainesville, Florida.

“We wanted to understand more about the modern human condition with regards to ethanol,” he said, referring to the kind of alcohol found in rotting fruit and that’s also used in liquor and fuel. To learn more about how human ancestors evolved the ability to break down alcohol, scientists focused on the genes that code for a group of digestive enzymes called the ADH4 family.

  • ADH4 enzymes are found in the stomach, throat and tongue of primates, and are the first alcohol-metabolizing enzymes to encounter ethanol after it is imbibed.
  • The researchers investigated the ADH4 genes from 28 different mammals, including 17 primates.
  • They collected the sequences of these genes from either genetic databanks or well-preserved tissue samples.

The scientists looked at the family trees of these 28 species, to investigate how closely related they were and find out when their ancestors diverged. In total, they explored nearly 70 million years of primate evolution, The scientists then used this knowledge to investigate how the ADH4 genes evolved over time and what the ADH4 genes of their ancestors might have been like.

  • Then, Carrigan and his colleagues took the genes for ADH4 from these 28 species, as well as the ancestral genes they modeled, and plugged them into bacteria, which read the genes and manufactured the ADH4 enzymes.
  • Next, they tested how well those enzymes broke down ethanol and other alcohols.
  • This method of using bacteria to read ancestral genes is “a new way to observe changes that happened a long time ago that didn’t fossilize into bones,” Carrigan said.
See also:  How Much Alcohol Do U Need To Get Drunk?

The results suggested there was a single genetic mutation 10 million years ago that endowed human ancestors with an enhanced ability to break down ethanol. “I remember seeing this huge difference in effects with this mutation and being really surprised,” Carrigan said.

  1. The scientists noted that the timing of this mutation coincided with a shift to a terrestrial lifestyle.
  2. The ability to consume ethanol may have helped human ancestors dine on rotting, fermenting fruit that fell on the forest floor when other food was scarce.
  3. I suspect ethanol was a second-choice item,” Carrigan said.

“If the ancestors of humans, chimps and gorillas had a choice between rotten and normal fruit, they would go for the normal fruit. Just because they were adapted to be able to ingest it doesn’t mean ethanol was their first choice, nor that they were perfectly adapted to metabolize it.

They might have benefited from small quantities, but not to excessive consumption.” In people today, drinking in moderation can have benefits, but drinking in excess can definitely cause health problems, experts agree. Scientists have suggested that problems people have with drinking, such as heart disease, liver disease, and mental health problems, result because humans have not evolved genes to sufficiently process ethanol.

Similarly, humans have not evolved genes to handle large amounts of sugar, fat and salt, which, in turn, have given way to obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and many other health problems. One model for the evolution of alcohol consumption suggests that ethanol only entered the human diet after people began to store extra food, potentially after the advent of agriculture, and that humans subsequently developed ways to intentionally direct the fermentation of food about 9,000 years ago.

  • Therefore, the theory goes, alcoholism as a disease resulted because the human genome has not had enough time to fully adapt to alcohol.
  • Another model suggests that human ancestors began consuming alcohol as early as 80 million years ago, when early primates occasionally ate rotting fermented fruit rich in ethanol.

This model suggests that the attraction to alcohol started becoming a problem once modern humans began intentionally fermenting food because it generated far more ethanol than was normally found in nature. The new findings support this model. In the future, Carrigan and his colleagues want to investigate what the ethanol content of fallen fruit might be, and find out whether apes, such as chimpanzees or gorillas, are willing to consume fermented fruit with varying levels of ethanol.

  1. We also want to look at other enzymes involved in alcohol metabolism, to see if they’re co-evolving with ADH4 at the same time,” Carrigan said.
  2. The scientists detailed their findings online today (Dec.1) in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
  3. Follow us @livescience, Facebook & Google+,

Original article on Live Science, Stay up to date on the latest science news by signing up for our Essentials newsletter. Charles Q. Choi is a contributing writer for Live Science and Space.com. He covers all things human origins and astronomy as well as physics, animals and general science topics.

Who invented alcohol to drink?

Nobody knows exactly when humans began to create fermented beverages. The earliest known evidence comes from 7,000 BCE in China, where residue in clay pots has revealed that people were making an alcoholic beverage from fermented rice, millet, grapes, and honey.

Why did they invent alcohol?

Ancient Egypt – Brewing dates from the beginning of civilization in ancient Egypt, and alcoholic beverages were very important at that time. Egyptian brewing began in the city of Hierakonpolis around 3400 BC; its ruins contain the remains of the world’s oldest brewery, which was capable of producing up to three hundred gallons (1,136 liters) per day of beer.

  1. Symbolic of this is the fact that while many gods were local or familial, Osiris was worshiped throughout the entire country.
  2. Osiris was believed to be the god of the dead, of life, of vegetable regeneration, and of wine.
  3. Both beer and wine were deified and offered to gods.
  4. Cellars and wine presses even had a god whose hieroglyph was a winepress.

The ancient Egyptians made at least 17 types of beer and at least 24 varieties of wine. The most common type of beer was known as hqt. Beer was the drink of common laborers; financial accounts report that the Giza pyramid builders were allotted a daily beer ration of one and one-third gallons.

Alcoholic beverages were used for pleasure, nutrition, medicine, ritual, remuneration, and funerary purposes. The latter involved storing the beverages in tombs of the deceased for their use in the after-life. Numerous accounts of the period stressed the importance of moderation, and these norms were both secular and religious.

While Egyptians did not generally appear to define drunkenness as a problem, they warned against taverns (which were often houses of prostitution ) and excessive drinking. After reviewing extensive evidence regarding the widespread but generally moderate use of alcoholic beverages, the nutritional biochemist and historian William J.

Darby makes a most important observation: all these accounts are warped by the fact that moderate users “were overshadowed by their more boisterous counterparts who added ‘color’ to history.” Thus, the intemperate use of alcohol throughout history receives a disproportionate amount of attention. Those who excessively use alcohol cause problems, draw attention to themselves, are highly visible and cause legislation to be enacted.

The vast majority of drinkers, who neither experience nor cause difficulties, are not noteworthy. Consequently, observers and writers largely ignore moderation. Evidence of distillation comes from alchemists working in Alexandria, Roman Egypt, in the 1st century AD.

What’s the oldest alcohol?

The Earliest Alcoholic Beverage in the World Chemical analyses recently confirmed that the earliest alcoholic beverage in the world was a mixed fermented drink of rice, honey, and hawthorn fruit and/or grape. The residues of the beverage, dated ca.7000–6600 BCE, were recovered from early pottery from Jiahu, a Neolithic village in the Yellow River Valley.

Dr. Patrick McGovernDr. Juzhong Zhang, University of Science and Technology of China Dr. Jigen Tang, Chinese Academy of Social SciencesDr. Zhiqing Zhang, Henan Institute of Cultural Relics and ArchaeologyDr. Gretchen R. Hall, Penn MuseumDr. Robert A. Moreau, U.S. Department of AgricultureDr. Alberto Nuñez, U.S. Department of AgricultureDr. Eric D. Butrym, Firmenich CorporationDr. Michael P. Richards, University of BradfordDr. Chen-shan Wang, Penn MuseumDr. Guangsheng Cheng, Chinese Academy of SciencesDr. Zhijun Zhao, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences Dr. Changsui Wang, University of Science and Technology of China

Chemical analyses of ancient organics absorbed, and preserved, in pottery jars from the Neolithic village of Jiahu, in Henan province, Northern China, have revealed that a mixed fermented beverage of rice, honey, and fruit was being produced as early as 9,000 years ago, approximately the same time that barley beer and grape wine were beginning to be made in the Middle East.

In addition, liquids more than 3,000 years old, remarkably preserved inside tightly lidded bronze vessels, were chemically analyzed. These vessels from the capital city of Anyang and an elite burial in the Yellow River Basin, dating to the Shang and Western Zhou Dynasties (ca.1250-1000 BCE), contained specialized rice and millet “wines.” The beverages had been flavored with herbs, flowers, and/or tree resins, and are similar to herbal wines described in the Shang dynasty oracle inscriptions.

The new discoveries, made by an international, multi-disciplinary team of researchers including the Penn Museum’s archaeochemist Dr. Patrick McGovern, provide the first direct chemical evidence for early fermented beverages in ancient Chinese culture, thus broadening our understanding of the key technological and cultural roles that fermented beverages played in China.

The discoveries and their implications for understanding ancient Chinese culture are published in the PNAS Early Edition (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences): by Patrick E. McGovern, Juzhong Zhang, Jigen Tang, Zhiquing Zhang, Gretchen R. Hall, Robert A. Moreau, Alberto Nuñez, Eric D. Butrym, Michael P.

Richards, Chen-shan Wang, Guangsheng Cheng, Zhijun Zhao, and Changsui Wang. Dr. McGovern worked with this team of researchers, associated with the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei, the Institute of Archaeology in Beijing, the Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology of Henan Province, the U.S.

Department of Agriculture, the Firmenich Corporation, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig (Germany), and the Institute of Microbiology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Dr. McGovern first met with archaeologists and scientists, including his co-authors on the paper, in China in 2000, returning there in 2001 and 2002.

Because of the great interest in using modern scientific techniques to investigate a crucial aspect of ancient Chinese culture, collaboration was initiated and samples carried back to the U.S. for analysis. Chemical tests of the pottery from the Neolithic village of Jiahu was of special interest, because it is some of the earliest known pottery from China.

  • This site was already famous for yielding some of the earliest musical instruments and domesticated rice, as well as possibly the earliest Chinese pictographic writing.
  • Through a variety of chemical methods including gas and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry, infrared spectrometry, and stable isotope analysis, finger-print compounds were identified, including those for hawthorn fruit and/or wild grape, beeswax associated with honey, and rice.

The prehistoric beverage at Jiahu, Dr. McGovern asserts, paved the way for unique cereal beverages of the proto-historic 2nd millennium BCE, remarkably preserved as liquids inside sealed bronze vessels of the Shang and Western Zhou Dynasties. The vessels had become hermetically sealed when their tightly fitting lids corroded, preventing evaporation.

Numerous bronze vessels with these liquids have been excavated at major urban centers along the Yellow River, especially from elite burials of high-ranking individuals. Besides serving as burial goods to sustain the dead in the afterlife, the vessels and their contents can also be related to funerary ceremonies in which living intermediaries communicated with the deceased ancestor and gods in an altered state of consciousness after imbibing a fermented beverage.

“The fragrant aroma of the liquids inside the tightly lidded jars and vats, when their lids were first removed after some three thousand years, suggested that they indeed represented Shang and Western Zhou fermented beverages, ” Dr. McGovern noted. Samples of liquid inside vessels from the important capital of Anyang and the Changzikou Tomb in Luyi county were analyzed.

See also:  Is Alcohol Bad For Teeth?

The combined archaeochemical, archaeobotanical and archaeological evidence for the Changzikou Tomb and Anyang liquids point to their being fermented and filtered rice or millet “wines,” either jiu or chang, its herbal equivalent, according to the Shang Dynasty oracle inscriptions. Specific aromatic herbs (e.g., wormword), flowers (e.g., chrysanthemum), and/or tree resins (e.g., China fir and elemi) had been added to the wines, according to detected compounds such as camphor and alpha-cedrene, beta-amyrin and oleanolic acid, as well as benzaldehyde, acetic acid, and short-chain alcohols characteristic of rice and millet wines.

Both jiu and chang of proto-historic China were likely made by mold saccharification, a uniquely Chinese contribution to beverage-making in which an assemblage of mold species are used to break down the carbohydrates of rice and other grains into simple, fermentable sugars.

Yeast for fermentation of the simple sugars enters the process adventitiously, either brought in by insects or settling on to large and small cakes of the mold conglomerate (qu) from the rafters of old buildings. As many as 100 special herbs, including wormwood, are used today to make qu, and some have been shown to increase the yeast activity by as much as seven-fold.

For Dr. McGovern, who began his role in the Chinese wine studies in 2000, this discovery offers an exciting new chapter in our rapidly growing understanding of the importance of fermented beverages in human culture around the world. In 1990, he and colleagues Rudolph H.

Michel and Virginia R. Badler first made headlines with the discovery of what was then the earliest known chemical evidence of wine, dating to ca.3500-3100 BCE, from Godin Tepe in the Zagros Mountains of western Iran (see “Drink and Be Merry!: Infrared Spectroscopy and Ancient Near Eastern Wine” in Organic Contents of Ancient Vessels: Materials Analysis and Archaeological Investigation, eds.W.R.

Biers and P.E. McGovern, MASCA Research Papers in Science and Archaeology, vol.7, Philadelphia: MASCA, University of Pennsylvania Museum, University of Pennsylvania). That finding was followed up by the earliest chemically confirmed barley beer in 1992, inside another vessel from the same room at Godin Tepe that housed the wine jars.

  • In 1994, chemical testing confirmed resinated wine inside two jars excavated by a Penn archaeological team at the Neolithic site of Hajji Firuz Tepe, Iran, dating to ca.5400 BCE and some 2000 years earlier than the Godin Tepe jar. Dr.
  • McGovern is author of Ancient Wine: The Search for the Origins of Viniculture (Princeton University Press, 2003).

Dr. McGovern’s research was made possible by support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Henry Luce Foundation, and the National Science Foundation (2000-2001; award BCS-9911128). The GC-MS analyses were carried out in the Chemistry Department of Drexel University through the kind auspices of J.P.

Honovich. Dr. McGovern also thanks the Institute of Archaeology in Beijing and Zhengzhou for logistical support and providing samples for analysis. Qin Ma Hui, Wuxiao Hong, Hsing-Tsung Huang, Shuicheng Li, Guoguang Luo, Victor Mair, Harold Olmo, Vernon Singleton, and Tiemei Chen variously advised on or facilitated the research.

Changsui Wang, chairperson of the Archaeometry program at the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei (Anhui Province) was untiring in his enthusiasm for the project, and personally accompanied Dr. McGovern on travels to excavations and institutes, where collaborations and meetings with key scientists and archaeologists were arranged.

When did alcoholism become a problem?

Disease designation builds momentum – Two years later, the court agreed to hear a case involving a man who argued he was afflicted with chronic alcoholism and that to punish him for his conduct would be cruel and unusual. The court, in the 1968 case Powell v.

  1. State of Texas, ultimately allowed the man to face punishment for his crime.
  2. But justices in their opinion established that the AMA designated alcoholism as a “major medical problem” in 1956 and “urged that alcoholics be admitted to general hospitals for care.” Justices said, “this significant development marked the acceptance among the medical profession of the ‘disease concept of alcoholism.'” The court noted that the medical community didn’t agree on what it meant to say alcoholism was a disease and that there was no known generally effective treatment.

Justices said that the AMA “defined alcoholics as ‘those excessive drinkers whose dependence on alcohol has attained such a degree that it shows a noticeable disturbance or interference with their bodily or mental health, their interpersonal relations, and their satisfactory social and economic functioning.'” Recognizing alcoholism as disease

How does tipsy feel?

2. Euphoria – A person will enter the euphoric stage of intoxication after consuming 2 to 3 drinks as a man or 1 to 2 drinks as a woman, in an hour. This is the tipsy stage. You might feel more confident and chatty. You might have a slower reaction time and lowered inhibitions.

Why is alcohol healthy?

Pros and cons of moderate alcohol use – Moderate alcohol consumption may provide some health benefits, such as:

  • Reducing your risk of developing and dying of heart disease
  • Possibly reducing your risk of ischemic stroke (when the arteries to your brain become narrowed or blocked, causing severely reduced blood flow)
  • Possibly reducing your risk of diabetes

However, eating a healthy diet and being physically active have much greater health benefits and have been more extensively studied. Keep in mind that even moderate alcohol use isn’t risk-free. For example, even light drinkers (those who have no more than one drink a day) have a tiny, but real, increased risk of some cancers, such as esophageal cancer.

Who first used drugs?

2. Drugs distribution and use in ancient environments – When examining the distribution of natural drugs in ancestral environment we see that there was often a limited amount of resources, meaning there was little overactivity of salient (wanting) behavior, causing no need for the adaptive development within the cortico-mesolimbic dopaminergic system of a built-in regulatory system of salience,

Genetic and environmental factors increasing substance abuse liability may have been of no consequence in ancestral environments due to their limitations. We originally relied on the limitations of ancient environments in that same manner, so when we are introduced to excessive amounts of salience in modern environment, we have no internal control.

Basically, our ancient-wired bodies have not yet evolved to adapt to modern environment, leaving us vulnerable to addiction. A common belief is that psychotropic plant chemicals evolved recurrently throughout evolutionary history, Archaeological records indicate the presence of psychotropic plants and drug use in ancient civilizations as far back as early hominid species about 200 million years ago.

Roughly 13,000 years ago, the inhabitants of Timor commonly used betel nut ( Areca catechu ), as did those in Thailand around 10,700 years ago. At the beginning of European colonialism, and perhaps for 40,000 years before that, Australian aborigines used nicotine from two different indigenous sources: pituri plant ( Duboisia hopwoodii ) and Nicotiana gossel,

North and South Americans also used nicotine from their indigenous plants N. tabacum and N. rustica, Ethiopians and northern Africans were documented as having used an ephedrine-analog, khat ( Catha edulis ), before European colonization. Cocaine ( Erythroxylum coca ) was taken by Ecuadorians about 5,000 years ago and by the indigenous people of the western Andes almost 7,000 years ago.

The substances were popularly administered through the buccal cavity within the cheek. Nicotine, cocaine, and ephedrine sources were first mixed with an alkali substance, most often wood or lime ash, creating a free base to facilitate diffusion of the drug into the blood stream. Alkali paraphernalia have been found throughout these regions and documented within the archaeological record.

Although the buccal method is believed to be most standard method of drug administration, inhabitants of the Americas may have also administered substances nasally, rectally, and by smoking. Many indigenous civilizations displayed a view of psychotropic plants as food sources, not as external chemicals altering internal homeostasis,

The perceived effects by these groups were tolerance to thermal fluctuations, increased energy, and decreased fatigue, all advantageous to fitness by allowing longer foraging session as well as greater ability to sustain in times of limited resources. The plants were used as nutritional sources providing vitamins, minerals, and proteins rather than recreational psychotropic substances inducing inebriation.

Due to limited resources within ancient environments, mammalian species most probably sought out CNS neurotransmitter (NT) substitutes in the form of psychotropic allelochemicals, because nutrient NT-precursors were not largely available in the forms of food.

Therefore, drugs became food sources to prevent decreased fitness from starvation and death. It is believed that early hominid species evolved in conjunction with the psychotropic flora due to constant exposure with one another. This may be what eventually allowed the above civilizations to use the flora as nutritional substances, therefore increasing both their fitness and viability.

Over time, psychotropic plants evolved to emit allelochemical reactivity to deter threats from herbivores and pathogenic invasions. These allelochemical responses evolved to imitate mammalian NT so as to act as competitive binders and obstruct normal CNS functioning.

  1. The allelochemical NT analogs were not anciently as potent as forms of abused substances used in modern environments, but instead were milder precursors that had an impact on the development of the mammalian CNS.
  2. The fit of allelochemicals within the CNS indicates some co-evolutionary activity between mammalian brains and psychotropic plants, meaning they interacted ecologically and therefore responded to one another evolutionarily.

Basically, series of changes occurred between the mammalian brain and psychotropic plants allowing them affect one another during their processes of evolving. This would have only been possible with mammalian CNS exposure to these allelochemicals, therefore to ancient mammalian psychotropic substance use.

What was the first man made drug?

Abstract – Studies in the field of forensic pharmacology and toxicology would not be complete without some knowledge of the history of drug discovery, the various personalities involved, and the events leading to the development and introduction of new therapeutic agents.

The first medicinal drugs came from natural sources and existed in the form of herbs, plants, roots, vines and fungi. Until the mid-nineteenth century nature’s pharmaceuticals were all that were available to relieve man’s pain and suffering. The first synthetic drug, chloral hydrate, was discovered in 1869 and introduced as a sedative-hypnotic; it is still available today in some countries.

The first pharmaceutical companies were spin-offs from the textiles and synthetic dye industry and owe much to the rich source of organic chemicals derived from the distillation of coal (coal-tar). The first analgesics and antipyretics, exemplified by phenacetin and acetanilide, were simple chemical derivatives of aniline and p-nitrophenol, both of which were byproducts from coal-tar.

  1. An extract from the bark of the white willow tree had been used for centuries to treat various fevers and inflammation.
  2. The active principle in white willow, salicin or salicylic acid, had a bitter taste and irritated the gastric mucosa, but a simple chemical modification was much more palatable.
  3. This was acetylsalicylic acid, better known as Aspirin®, the first blockbuster drug.
See also:  Does Alcohol Help You Sleep?

At the start of the twentieth century, the first of the barbiturate family of drugs entered the pharmacopoeia and the rest, as they say, is history. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

What is the original drug?

How Was Alcohol Invented What is generic drug and what is original drug? An original brand drug or innovator drug is simply the first drug created containing a specific active ingredient to receive approval for use. In addition, its efficacy, safety and quality have been fully established.

When did we first start drinking alcohol?

The Earliest Alcoholic Beverage in the World Chemical analyses recently confirmed that the earliest alcoholic beverage in the world was a mixed fermented drink of rice, honey, and hawthorn fruit and/or grape. The residues of the beverage, dated ca.7000–6600 BCE, were recovered from early pottery from Jiahu, a Neolithic village in the Yellow River Valley.

Dr. Patrick McGovernDr. Juzhong Zhang, University of Science and Technology of China Dr. Jigen Tang, Chinese Academy of Social SciencesDr. Zhiqing Zhang, Henan Institute of Cultural Relics and ArchaeologyDr. Gretchen R. Hall, Penn MuseumDr. Robert A. Moreau, U.S. Department of AgricultureDr. Alberto Nuñez, U.S. Department of AgricultureDr. Eric D. Butrym, Firmenich CorporationDr. Michael P. Richards, University of BradfordDr. Chen-shan Wang, Penn MuseumDr. Guangsheng Cheng, Chinese Academy of SciencesDr. Zhijun Zhao, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences Dr. Changsui Wang, University of Science and Technology of China

Chemical analyses of ancient organics absorbed, and preserved, in pottery jars from the Neolithic village of Jiahu, in Henan province, Northern China, have revealed that a mixed fermented beverage of rice, honey, and fruit was being produced as early as 9,000 years ago, approximately the same time that barley beer and grape wine were beginning to be made in the Middle East.

  • In addition, liquids more than 3,000 years old, remarkably preserved inside tightly lidded bronze vessels, were chemically analyzed.
  • These vessels from the capital city of Anyang and an elite burial in the Yellow River Basin, dating to the Shang and Western Zhou Dynasties (ca.1250-1000 BCE), contained specialized rice and millet “wines.” The beverages had been flavored with herbs, flowers, and/or tree resins, and are similar to herbal wines described in the Shang dynasty oracle inscriptions.

The new discoveries, made by an international, multi-disciplinary team of researchers including the Penn Museum’s archaeochemist Dr. Patrick McGovern, provide the first direct chemical evidence for early fermented beverages in ancient Chinese culture, thus broadening our understanding of the key technological and cultural roles that fermented beverages played in China.

The discoveries and their implications for understanding ancient Chinese culture are published in the PNAS Early Edition (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences): by Patrick E. McGovern, Juzhong Zhang, Jigen Tang, Zhiquing Zhang, Gretchen R. Hall, Robert A. Moreau, Alberto Nuñez, Eric D. Butrym, Michael P.

Richards, Chen-shan Wang, Guangsheng Cheng, Zhijun Zhao, and Changsui Wang. Dr. McGovern worked with this team of researchers, associated with the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei, the Institute of Archaeology in Beijing, the Institute of Cultural Relics and Archaeology of Henan Province, the U.S.

  1. Department of Agriculture, the Firmenich Corporation, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig (Germany), and the Institute of Microbiology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Dr.
  2. McGovern first met with archaeologists and scientists, including his co-authors on the paper, in China in 2000, returning there in 2001 and 2002.

Because of the great interest in using modern scientific techniques to investigate a crucial aspect of ancient Chinese culture, collaboration was initiated and samples carried back to the U.S. for analysis. Chemical tests of the pottery from the Neolithic village of Jiahu was of special interest, because it is some of the earliest known pottery from China.

This site was already famous for yielding some of the earliest musical instruments and domesticated rice, as well as possibly the earliest Chinese pictographic writing. Through a variety of chemical methods including gas and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry, infrared spectrometry, and stable isotope analysis, finger-print compounds were identified, including those for hawthorn fruit and/or wild grape, beeswax associated with honey, and rice.

The prehistoric beverage at Jiahu, Dr. McGovern asserts, paved the way for unique cereal beverages of the proto-historic 2nd millennium BCE, remarkably preserved as liquids inside sealed bronze vessels of the Shang and Western Zhou Dynasties. The vessels had become hermetically sealed when their tightly fitting lids corroded, preventing evaporation.

Numerous bronze vessels with these liquids have been excavated at major urban centers along the Yellow River, especially from elite burials of high-ranking individuals. Besides serving as burial goods to sustain the dead in the afterlife, the vessels and their contents can also be related to funerary ceremonies in which living intermediaries communicated with the deceased ancestor and gods in an altered state of consciousness after imbibing a fermented beverage.

“The fragrant aroma of the liquids inside the tightly lidded jars and vats, when their lids were first removed after some three thousand years, suggested that they indeed represented Shang and Western Zhou fermented beverages, ” Dr. McGovern noted. Samples of liquid inside vessels from the important capital of Anyang and the Changzikou Tomb in Luyi county were analyzed.

The combined archaeochemical, archaeobotanical and archaeological evidence for the Changzikou Tomb and Anyang liquids point to their being fermented and filtered rice or millet “wines,” either jiu or chang, its herbal equivalent, according to the Shang Dynasty oracle inscriptions. Specific aromatic herbs (e.g., wormword), flowers (e.g., chrysanthemum), and/or tree resins (e.g., China fir and elemi) had been added to the wines, according to detected compounds such as camphor and alpha-cedrene, beta-amyrin and oleanolic acid, as well as benzaldehyde, acetic acid, and short-chain alcohols characteristic of rice and millet wines.

Both jiu and chang of proto-historic China were likely made by mold saccharification, a uniquely Chinese contribution to beverage-making in which an assemblage of mold species are used to break down the carbohydrates of rice and other grains into simple, fermentable sugars.

  • Yeast for fermentation of the simple sugars enters the process adventitiously, either brought in by insects or settling on to large and small cakes of the mold conglomerate (qu) from the rafters of old buildings.
  • As many as 100 special herbs, including wormwood, are used today to make qu, and some have been shown to increase the yeast activity by as much as seven-fold.

For Dr. McGovern, who began his role in the Chinese wine studies in 2000, this discovery offers an exciting new chapter in our rapidly growing understanding of the importance of fermented beverages in human culture around the world. In 1990, he and colleagues Rudolph H.

  • Michel and Virginia R.
  • Badler first made headlines with the discovery of what was then the earliest known chemical evidence of wine, dating to ca.3500-3100 BCE, from Godin Tepe in the Zagros Mountains of western Iran (see “Drink and Be Merry!: Infrared Spectroscopy and Ancient Near Eastern Wine” in Organic Contents of Ancient Vessels: Materials Analysis and Archaeological Investigation, eds.W.R.

Biers and P.E. McGovern, MASCA Research Papers in Science and Archaeology, vol.7, Philadelphia: MASCA, University of Pennsylvania Museum, University of Pennsylvania). That finding was followed up by the earliest chemically confirmed barley beer in 1992, inside another vessel from the same room at Godin Tepe that housed the wine jars.

  1. In 1994, chemical testing confirmed resinated wine inside two jars excavated by a Penn archaeological team at the Neolithic site of Hajji Firuz Tepe, Iran, dating to ca.5400 BCE and some 2000 years earlier than the Godin Tepe jar. Dr.
  2. McGovern is author of Ancient Wine: The Search for the Origins of Viniculture (Princeton University Press, 2003).

Dr. McGovern’s research was made possible by support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Henry Luce Foundation, and the National Science Foundation (2000-2001; award BCS-9911128). The GC-MS analyses were carried out in the Chemistry Department of Drexel University through the kind auspices of J.P.

Honovich. Dr. McGovern also thanks the Institute of Archaeology in Beijing and Zhengzhou for logistical support and providing samples for analysis. Qin Ma Hui, Wuxiao Hong, Hsing-Tsung Huang, Shuicheng Li, Guoguang Luo, Victor Mair, Harold Olmo, Vernon Singleton, and Tiemei Chen variously advised on or facilitated the research.

Changsui Wang, chairperson of the Archaeometry program at the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei (Anhui Province) was untiring in his enthusiasm for the project, and personally accompanied Dr. McGovern on travels to excavations and institutes, where collaborations and meetings with key scientists and archaeologists were arranged.

What was alcohol used for first?

Greeks – Ancient Greece was one of the earliest known centers of wine production. Winemakers established vineyards as early as 2000 B.C.5 Alcohol played a pivotal role in early Greek religious culture and was often used as an offering to the gods. It was also used as currency throughout the Mediterranean region.

Did human body produce alcohol?

Ethanol and evolution – The average human digestive system produces approximately 3 g of ethanol per day through fermentation of its contents. Catabolic degradation of ethanol is thus essential to life, not only of humans, but of all known organisms. Certain amino acid sequences in the enzymes used to oxidize ethanol are conserved (unchanged) going back to the last common ancestor over 3.5 bya.

Such a function is necessary because all organisms produce alcohol in small amounts by several pathways, primarily through fatty acid synthesis, glycerolipid metabolism, and bile acid biosynthesis pathways. If the body had no mechanism for catabolizing the alcohols, they would build up in the body and become toxic.

This could be an evolutionary rationale for alcohol catabolism also by sulfotransferase,

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