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"People have an absolute right to just sit there."
March 31, 2006 6:40 AM   Subscribe

Extreme laziness may have a medical basis, say a group of Australian scientists, describing a new condition called motivational deficiency disorder (MoDeD). The condition may cost the Australian economy $1.7bn a year. Could the new drug Indolebant help sufferers leave their couches? Or is this just disease mongering?
posted by Bletch (31 comments total)

 
Finally! I have an excuse!

If only I could bring myself to use it... aw, maybe later.
posted by grubi at 6:42 AM on March 31, 2006


Almost forgot that it's the 1st of April..!!
posted by sk381 at 6:43 AM on March 31, 2006


Link to abstract
(Full article is hidden behind stupid registration thingy)
posted by slater at 6:45 AM on March 31, 2006


A little too blatant an April Fools to fool anyone, but still funny. Well, the part I could read for free was funny.
posted by Jart at 6:47 AM on March 31, 2006


As it's a medical condition that so many of us may suffer from, I'm sure the BMJ will not mind the full text being reposted.

Scientists find new disease: motivational deficiency disorder
Ray Moynihan, Sydney

Extreme laziness may have a medical basis, say a group of high profile Australian scientists, describing a new condition called motivational deficiency disorder (MoDeD).

The condition is claimed to affect up to one in five Australians and is characterised by overwhelming and debilitating apathy. Neuroscientists at the University of Newcastle in Australia say that in severe cases motivational deficiency disorder can be fatal, because the condition reduces the motivation to breathe.

Neurologist Leth Argos is part of the team that has identified the disorder, which can be diagnosed using a combination of positron emission tomography and low scores on a motivation rating scale, previously validated in elite athletes. "This disorder is poorly understood," Professor Argos told the BMJ. "It is underdiagnosed and undertreated."

Professor Argos is an adviser to a small Australian biotechnology company, Healthtec, which is currently concluding phase II trials of indolebant, a cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist. Although still unpublished, the preliminary results from the company's phase II studies are promising, according to Professor Argos: "Indolebant is effective and well tolerated. One young man who could not leave his sofa is now working as an investment adviser in Sydney."

David Henry, a clinical pharmacologist at the University of Newcastle and long time critic of pharmaceutical marketing strategies, says that although he appreciates that some people with severe motivational deficiency disorder may need treatment, he is concerned that the prevalence estimates of one in five are inflated and that ordinary laziness is being medicalised. "Indolebant may bring some relief to those with a debilitating form of MoDeD, but common laziness is not a disease. People have an absolute right to just sit there."

Professor Henry has organised a conference at Newcastle University to highlight what he describes as "disease mongering," which will take place 11-13 April 2006 (www.diseasemongering.org). The conference will produce a consensus statement to be published in PLoS Medicine, which will launch its theme issue on disease mongering this week.

A study of the economic impacts of motivational deficiency disorder estimates the condition may be costing the Australian economy $A2.4bn (£970m; 1.4bn; $1.7bn) a year in lost productivity. This has prompted calls from industry and advocacy groups for a fast tracking of the regulatory assessment of indolebant in Australia and worldwide.
posted by Bletch at 6:50 AM on March 31, 2006


what is usernamd and password to read the article?
posted by matthewchen at 6:50 AM on March 31, 2006


"Neurologist Leth Argos." Heh.
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:54 AM on March 31, 2006


Pop pills for peppier performance.
posted by caddis at 7:01 AM on March 31, 2006


HAHAHAHAHA!
posted by HTuttle at 7:07 AM on March 31, 2006


We've had a cure for this for a while. It's called methanpheatmine
posted by delmoi at 7:16 AM on March 31, 2006


It's March 31.
posted by fourcheesemac at 7:17 AM on March 31, 2006


So, people with this disability can now demand accomodation in their workplaces?
posted by dreamsign at 7:17 AM on March 31, 2006


"Aaah, they lie about marijuana. Tell you pot-smoking makes you unmotivated. Liiie. When you're high, you can do everything you normally do, just as well. You just realize, it's not worth the fucking effort. There is a difference. (Miming a toke) 'Sure I can get up at dawn (toke), go to a job I hate, that does not inspire me creatively whatsoever, for the rest of my fucking life... (Deep toke). Or I can wake up at noon and learn how to play the sitar!'"
posted by Drexen at 7:17 AM on March 31, 2006


We've known the cause of this for a while too. I'm smoking it.
posted by fourcheesemac at 7:18 AM on March 31, 2006


It's March 31.
posted by fourcheesemac at 7:17 AM PST on March 31 [!]

Not in this part of the world
posted by tellurian at 7:25 AM on March 31, 2006


I was gonna say this is a prank, but then I got high.
posted by Toecutter at 7:35 AM on March 31, 2006


You had me until the term Indolebant. No way.
posted by mrgrimm at 7:52 AM on March 31, 2006


Disease-Mongering to be held in Newcastle New South Wales, Australia on April 11th to 13th 2006
posted by tellurian at 8:13 AM on March 31, 2006


You had me until the term Indolebant. No way.

As opposed to Obecalp?
posted by fourcheesemac at 8:15 AM on March 31, 2006


Someone read this post to me please.
posted by longbaugh at 9:10 AM on March 31, 2006


Leth Argos? Indolebant? This is an April Fool's article.
posted by cosmicbandito at 9:13 AM on March 31, 2006


Fourcheesemac: Westerncentric?
posted by applemeat at 9:19 AM on March 31, 2006


I was going to read the article, but then I saw it required registration, so I decided it was too much trouble.
posted by tula at 9:21 AM on March 31, 2006



Almost forgot that it's the 1st of April..!!
posted by sk381 at 6:43 AM PST on March 31 [!]


Is this some sort of metafoolsjoke?
posted by Brainy at 9:34 AM on March 31, 2006


ADD?
posted by VulcanMike at 9:52 AM on March 31, 2006


It's tommorow in Australia people !!
posted by Megafly at 10:55 AM on March 31, 2006


"Ask your doctor about Indolebant. Or better yet, have some ask for you, because you are too effing lazy to do it."

"Indolebant may cause drowsiness, knee pain, and moments of religious awe. Do not operate nuclear weapon systems if you are taking Indolebant."
posted by grytpype at 11:26 AM on March 31, 2006


Here's a related tidbit: hookworm prevalency in the south has been called out as a likely reason why southerners have a reputation for sitting on a porch all day being listless and lazy; hookworms take as much blood from the host as possible without killing them, leaving the host exhausted and unmotivated.

This specific theory (about the south) was mentioned in a book about parasites I recently read, but here's a quick info link about the hookworm, including a reference to the laziness effect: Check it.
posted by davejay at 11:41 AM on March 31, 2006


BMJ 2006;332:745 (1 April), doi:10.1136/bmj.332.7544.745-a
posted by headless at 12:37 PM on March 31, 2006


The name they chose for the drug is pretty clever: there is a relatively new class of CB1 receptor blockers whose names all end in "-bant", and 'indole-' is the name of a chemical structural building block that is widely represented in nature. If there really were a clinical laziness disorder, a CB1 receptor blocker might be worth a try. The agonist sure has the opposite effect on me (or used to anyway, these days it seems to generate mostly irrational paranoia :-)
posted by oats at 2:56 PM on March 31, 2006


Since it's not yet April 1 here, I was with them up until Healthtec . . . is currently concluding phase II trials of indolebant, a cannabinoid.

That was when I sporfled. All over my keyboard, too.
posted by booksandlibretti at 6:11 PM on March 31, 2006


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