Gold Salts and Medicine

While eating gold at a fancy restaurant is an extravagant event, it’s rather lackluster in a gastrointestinal sense. Pure gold is inert to all of the body’s internal chemistry – so it is tasteless and provides no nutritional value. However, there are ways to tweak gold’s formula to change this.

Aurotherapy is a branch of medicine that uses chemical compounds of gold to treat certain conditions and diseases. Most notably, gold compounds (often incorrectly referred to as gold salts) have anti-inflammatory properties. As such, gold can play a role in the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease, psoriatic arthritis, membranous nephritis, and lupus erythematosus.

Remember, in its normal state, gold doesn’t affect the body at all. It’s only useful in medicine when converted to a chemical compound, such as gold thioglucose, gold sodium thiosulfate, or gold sodium thiomalate (to name a few). Most commonly, gold compounds are prescribed for rheumatoid arthritis. They can be taken either orally or via intramuscular injection (which is more effective). After a few weeks of treatment, the gold compounds build up inside the body and reduce stiffness and swelling in the joints.

Of course, as with any medicine, there is the possibility of side effects. When gold compounds are taken orally, they may cause decreased appetite, nausea, hair thinning and diarrhea, and/or problems affecting the soft tissues, like skin, blood, kidneys, eyes, or lungs. Injection treatments can cause skin rash, mouth sores, or in rare cases, kidney problems.

Gold is not the only precious metal to play a part in the medicinal field. Silver has also been used in medicine for a long time because of its antimicrobial properties. Perhaps science will continue to discover even more great uses for precious metal!

The Lost Treasure at the Treacherous Lake Toplitz: Part 3

When we last saw the 2009 search and salvage operation at Lake Toplitz, the crew was in bad shape. With time running out and a broken navigation system on the Phantom diving robot, all hope seemed lost of finding anything at the lake. However, the Phantom had stumbled on something promising before aborting its mission.

As a last ditch effort, the team launched a one-man submarine to investigate the last clue the Phantom saw before it began to malfunction. With the last of their remaining time to scour the lake, they recovered a large cube of paper – the crate that had housed it completely deteriorated away. But, that was all there was time for – the crew was due to leave as per their 30-day agreement with the Austrian government.

When it was recovered from the lake bottom, the paper cube had begun to rapidly disintegrate during the collection and ascent. Experts doubted that they could glean anything from the soggy mess. However, they worked hard to dry and restore what they had found to point where individual, intact, pieces could be separated from the mass that had sat at the bottom of a lake for more than 50 years. Upon examination, they were found to be highly realistic forgeries of British currency. Operation Bernhard was real, and the Nazis had indeed been hiding evidence at the bottom of Lake Toplitz. Surely, gold and other valuables are concealed by the lake.

However, it seems they will be destined to stay at the lake bottom. There is just no safe or reliable way to salvage it. Lake Toplitz is 2km long and more than 100m deep. A large team would be needed, but the Austrian government is not fond of granting permission for any salvage operations. The lake itself, while beautiful, is very forbidding under the surface. The water is freezing, there is no light or oxygen after 20m, and hundreds of fallen trees make many areas inaccessible to divers. On top of that, the gold itself poses problems. Because it is so heavy, it may have sunk into the silt at the bottom. Even if it were found, it may be extremely difficult to bring to the surface.

It seems that if there really is any Nazi gold at the bottom of Lake Toplitz, it’s going to be there for a long time.

Cupcakes for Cancer 2012

The second “Cupcakes for Cancer” fundraiser is almost here! October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. To show our support in the fight against breast cancer, MGS will partner with Butter Lane Bakery to hold the Cupcakes for Cancer fundraiser.

From Oct. 22-26, the MGS storefront will be stocked with freshly baked cupcakes from Butter Lane Bakery. Donors are free to pay any amount they feel is fair for a cupcake.

100% of the proceeds from cupcake sales will go to the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

Details for this year’s Cupcakes for Cancer are still being finalized, so please stay tuned for more information on how to help this worthy cause! Connect with us in social media or use our contact page to make sure you don’t miss any details about Cupcakes for Cancer and our fundraising progress. We hope to see you there!