Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC
GLOBETECH MEDIA

Diabetes Drug Decreases Psychostimulant Addiction Behavior

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 06 Nov 2012
Researchers report a drug currently used for the medical management of type 2 diabetes could also be effective for treating addiction to often-abused psychostimulants.

Researchers from Vanderbilt University (Nashville, TN, USA) have found that a brain mechanism known to be a therapeutic target in treating type 2 diabetes mellitus also appears to be involved in some forms of drug addiction. In a study of cocaine addiction, animals were injected with the diabetes drug Exendin-4, a longer-lasting analog of the natural hormone glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), which is released in response to nutrient ingestion and is a regulator of energy metabolism and feeding behavior. The resulting behavior showed significant reduction of the rewarding effects of cocaine and the findings were consistent over a broad range of Exendin-4 dosage. The study reported no evidence of negative side effects or addiction to Exendin-4 treatment.

“We suspect that this is a general mechanism that will translate to additional drugs of abuse, especially other stimulants, like amphetamine and methamphetamine,” said Gregg Stanwood, PhD, assistant professor of Pharmacology and an investigator in the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center and Vanderbilt Brain Institute. "I think the power of this research is that it is so easily translatable to humans because [Extendin-4] is already FDA approved [for diabetes]," said Aurelio Galli, PhD, professor of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics, Vanderbilt Brain Institute investigator, and codirector of the Neuroscience Program in Substance Abuse. "Any disease that is based on dysregulated dopamine can be potentially targeted. There is a lot of comorbidity between metabolic disorders like diabetes and obesity and psychiatric disease like addiction and schizophrenia."

Prof. Stanwood noted that although it is important to be very cautious in extrapolating the results to humans, these are encouraging data. “There are no medically based therapies for stimulant addiction that have been successful in the clinic, although there are a variety of psychosocial and behavioral therapies that are somewhat effective in some people,” said Prof. Stanwood. “The beauty of this is that it targets a completely new mechanism so we are cautiously hopeful [...]. We don’t expect this to be a magic bullet where one can simply take this drug and their addiction goes away, but hopefully a medicine like this, in combination with social and behavioral support, will help an addict on the road to recovery.”

The findings were published early online October 23, 2012, in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.

Related Links:

Vanderbilt University



Channels

Genomics/Proteomics

view channel
Image: Transmission electron micrograph of norovirus particles in feces (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons).

Norovirus Interacts with Gut Bacteria to Establish a Persistent Infection That Can Be Blocked by Interferon Lambda

A team of molecular microbiologists and virologists has found that norovirus requires an intimate interaction with certain gut bacteria to establish a persistent infection, and that the infective process... Read more

Biochemistry

view channel

Possible New Target Found for Treating Brain Inflammation

Scientists have identified an enzyme that produces a class of inflammatory lipid molecules in the brain. Abnormally high levels of these molecules appear to cause a rare inherited eurodegenerative disorder, and that disorder now may be treatable if researchers can develop suitable drug candidates that suppress this enzyme.... Read more

Therapeutics

view channel
Image: Cancer cells infected with tumor-targeted oncolytic virus (red). Green indicates alpha-tubulin, a cell skeleton protein. Blue is DNA in the cancer cell nuclei (Photo courtesy of Dr. Rathi Gangeswaran, Bart’s Cancer Institute).

Innovative “Viro-Immunotherapy” Designed to Kill Breast Cancer Cells

A leading scientist has devised a new treatment that employs viruses to kill breast cancer cells. The research could lead to a promising “viro-immunotherapy” for patients with triple-negative breast cancer,... Read more

Lab Technologies

view channel
Image: MIT researchers have designed a microfluidic device that allows them to precisely trap pairs of cells (one red, one green) and observe how they interact over time (Photo courtesy of Burak Dura, MIT).

New Device Designed to See Communication between Immune Cells

The immune system is a complicated network of many different cells working together to defend against invaders. Effectively combating an infection depends on the interactions between these cells.... Read more

Business

view channel

Program Designed to Provide High-Performance Computing Cluster Systems for Bioinformatics Research

Dedicated Computing (Waukesha, WI, USA), a global technology company, reported that it will be participating in the Intel Cluster Ready program to deliver integrated high-performance computing cluster solutions to the life sciences market. Powered by Intel Xeon processors, Dedicated Computing is providing a range of... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2015 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.