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A drug for prescription drug addiction?

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If you're addicted to prescription drugs, don't worry: there's a drug for that.

That's right--a new prescription drug that's designed to combat drug addiction is now in clinical trials in New York. The study is funded by the National Institutes for Drug Abuse.

Introducing Ibudilast

The new wonder pill is called Ibudilast, and it may be able to snuff out opioid cravings that happens when a person becomes addicted to prescription drugs. Much like Campral--a drug approved by the FDA in 2004 to help alcoholics with cravings, makers of Ibudilast, MediciNova, hope the drug will be just as profitable on the market.

MediciNova chief scientific officer Dr. Kirk Johnson explains that a drug addict's brain undergoes significant damage, which Ibudilast would intend to correct:

"The drug of abuse can cause physical neuronal damage that may take a significant period of time to correct. So it is expected that MN-166 (the test code for Ibudilast) would be a therapy subjects would take for a considerable period of time to successfully manage initial withdrawal and the high-risk period for relapse.”

Similar substances

Suboxone, a drug used to treat opiate addiction that was approved by the FDA in 2004, has come to be a widely abused substance--the very opposite effect it was supposed to have for addicts.

Apparently MediciNova has seven other drugs they are testing that are similar to Ibudilast, but that Ibudilast is one of the company's "prioritized product candidates." The drug is currently on the market in Japan, and if approved in the US, it would be available for sale in about 5 years. A typical course of treatment with Ibudilast would be about 6-18 months, depending on the patient.

Source: Smart Planet
Source: Daily Caller