by Zoe Pollock
Researchers are looking into an extract from the Kudzu vine to treat cocaine addiction. Originally brought over from Asia to prevent soil erosion, Kudzu has spread across the bible belt and is otherwise known as the "vine that ate the South."
When my family first moved to North Carolina, I remember thinking how beautifully the vines anthropomorphized all phone poles, trees, and abandoned structures, only to discover it was actually doing a good amount of harm to the native plant species. Here's to hoping the vines can one day be harvested for a good cause.
(Photo by Flickr user SoftCore Studios)