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Fentanyl ‘Vaccine’ Inhibits The Brain’s Absorption Of The Drug ‘Opioid’



Fentanyl 'Vaccine' Inhibits The Brain's Absorption Of The Drug 'Opioid'

(CTN NEWS) – A new study reveals that a fentanyl vaccine could prevent the harmful physiological reactions like respiratory depression as well as the tremendous euphoria the drug causes.

The blood-brain barrier can be blocked by a novel vaccine that targets the synthetic opioid fentanyl, preventing the drug’s quick onset and highly reinforcing euphoria.

The University of Houston (UH) researchers claim that the discovery has the potential to be used as a relapse prevention medication for persons with chronic opioid use disorder (OUD).

The researchers, who recently reported their findings in the journal Pharmaceutics, state that OUD relapse rates are approximately 90% even with maintenance therapy, “largely due to poor drug adherence to existing medications.”

As fentanyl and its derivatives have spread rapidly as additives of other misused substances, they keep going, those who do relapse are at an increasing risk of an opioid overdose.

Furthermore, people who don’t typically take opioids are at risk of overdose and/or death because fentanyl is now included in:

Counterfeit versions of widely prescribed drugs including benzodiazepines, oxycodone, and hydrocodone/acetaminophen.

In the US, overdoses using synthetic opioids, like as fentanyl, continue to claim the lives of more than 150 people every day.

According to a UH statement, fentanyl is 50 times more strong than heroin and 100 times more potent than morphine.

Depending on the size of the person, consumption of roughly 2 milligrammes of fentanyl (the equivalent of two grains of rice) is likely to be lethal.

Fentanyl 'Vaccine' Inhibits The Brain's Absorption Of The Drug 'Opioid'

An estimated 150 people die every day from synthetic opioid-related overdose deaths. (University of Houston)

“We think these discoveries could have a big influence on opioid usage, a very serious issue that has plagued society for a long time.

According to the study’s lead author, Colin Haile, MD, PhD, a research associate professor of psychology at UH and the Texas Institute for Measurement,

Evaluation and Statistics (TIMES) as well as a founding member of the UH Drug Discovery Institute.

“Our vaccine has the ability to produce antifentanyl antibodies that bind to the ingested fentanyl and prevent it from accessing the brain, allowing the drug to be excreted from the body through the kidneys.

The person won’t experience the euphoric effects and can ‘get back on the waggon’ to sobriety as a result”

“Our vaccine has the ability to produce antifentanyl antibodies, which attach to the ingested fentanyl and prevent it from entering the brain, allowing it to be excreted from the body through the kidneys.

As a result, the person won’t experience the euphoric effects and might “get back on the waggon” to sobriety.”

The research by Haile and colleagues shows that the vaccination can prevent fentanyl from entering the brain and can also prevent the fentanyl-induced lowering of physiologic indicators of overdose.

Such as oxygen saturation and heart rate.

Additionally, the research team found no unfavourable side effects in the immunisation rats used in lab tests.

They claim that because two of the vaccine formulation’s ingredients are included in commercial vaccines or have either been thoroughly examined in numerous clinical trials and proved to be both safe and effective.

They anticipate few adverse reactions in humans.

They found no cross reactivity between the antifentanyl antibodies generated and other opioids, such as morphine. Instead, they were specific to fentanyl and a fentanyl derivative.

Therefore, using other opioids for pain management will not be prohibited by vaccination, according to Haile.

In human clinical trials, the adjuvant dmLT, which was created by E. coli, was mixed with other vaccinations in the vaccine under consideration.

It is especially desirable for a vaccination that targets OUD to have adjuvants that increase immunogenicity.

The authors emphasise that a number of factors, including formulation (e.g., extended release, depot, implantable), compliance, access to drugs.

And the specific abused opioid, affect the efficacy of the current OUD treatments, which include methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone.

It’s a “Game changer.”

The study’s main author, Therese Kosten, PhD, a psychology professor at the University of Houston who also serves as the program’s director for developmental, cognitive, and behavioural neuroscience.

He deems the new vaccination a possible “game changer.”

According to Kosten, controlling acute overdose with short-acting naloxone is ineffective since numerous doses of the drug are sometimes required to reverse the lethal effects of fentanyl.

“Fentanyl use and overdose is a particular treatment problem that is not successfully addressed with current drugs because of its pharmacodynamics,” said Kosten.

“This pharmacodynamic efficacy barrier can be addressed with immunotherapies that inhibit fentanyl’s entrance into the brain,” the study’s authors write, “preemptively avoiding its reinforcing and overdosing consequences.”

The researchers will start making the vaccine in the upcoming months with an eye toward conducting human clinical trials shortly after.

The study’s funding came from the Department of Defense‘s Alcohol and Substance Abuse Disorders Program.

Which is run by RTI International’s Pharmacotherapies for Alcohol and Substance Use Disorders Alliance and has supported Haile’s lab’s work on the anti-fentanyl vaccination for several years.


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