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Nationwide News Old Antibiotic May Be Used

Summary: Nationwide News
Old Antibiotic May Be Used
to Treat Mental Illnesses
Baltimore Sun, The (KRT) - April 14, 2008
BALTIMORE -- For a half-century, D-cycloserine has led a quiet, workmanlike
existence as an antibiotic, primarily for tuberculosis in developing countries. Its
patent has long since expired, and its popularity has waned as newer antibiotics
have appeared.
But D-cycloserine might now get a second act: A growing number of researchers
say the drug could transform the way doctors treat a range of psychiatric
ailments, including anxiety, phobia and obsessive-compulsive disorder. It could
also help alleviate addiction, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and
chronic pain.
The drug has become a hot topic in anxiety research, with about 30 studies now
under way. And a biotech company is seeking approval from the Food and Drug
Administration to use D-cycloserine for anxiety disorders.
"ItāTMs a very exciting treatment, and it holds great promise," says Michael Otto,
director of the Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders at Boston University. "It
gives us a whole new direction to go in."
Otto, who has studied the drugāTMs effect on panic and obsessive-compulsive


Source: Apkarian, A. Vania - Department of Physiology, Northwestern University


Collections: Biology and Medicine