(Black Press Media file photo)

Vaccine against fentanyl shows promising results in rats: U.S. study

Rats chose food more times instead of fentanyl after receiving the vaccine treatment

A vaccine against fentanyl addiction is showing promising results in a recent study.

Research published in the American journal Neuropsychopharmacology last week found that a fentanyl antigen (an antigen triggers the production of antibodies) combined with a type of tetanus vaccine decreased drug-taking behaviour in rats and increased food choices, according to a news release.

British Columbia reported more than 1,300 illicit drug overdose deaths related to fentanyl in 2018, an increase of seven per cent from 2017.

“More effective and readily available treatments for opioid use disorder are needed to tackle the current crisis,” said lead authors Kim Janda, a professor at Scripps Research in San Diego, and Dr. Matthew Banks of the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine.

READ MORE: Health Canada tightens marketing requirements for opioid prescriptions

“One strategy includes using opioid-targeted vaccines to elicit antibody production by the host’s immune system that recognize and block the passage of a specific opioid into the brain and peripheral organs/tissue.”

The study focused on the rats’ behavioural patterns and the number of times they chose fentanyl injections or food.

Before the treatment, rats chose a large amount of fentanyl, but within four weeks of being vaccinated, the number of times they chose the drug decreased.

The effectiveness of the vaccine has not been studied in humans.



joti.grewal@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Convicted animal abuser to return to B.C. court May 21

Catherine Jessica Adams is facing a breach of probation charge

Concerns over democracy as Senate committee votes to nix oil tanker ban

Critics of the Senate’s recommendation to kill Bill C-48 say it goes against popular will

Northwest Fire Centre open burn ban lifted

Recent rain, cooler temperatures have lowered the region’s fire risk

Telkwa pot plant application passes review

Cannabis company claims new Health Canada regulations are working in its favour

Red cedars dying in northwestern B.C. from drought

There was a 75 per cent decline in precipitation for the months of February and April

Kelowna RCMP interrogation video brings home reality in ‘visceral way’: former TRC chairman

Video of Mountie interrogating young Indigenous woman disclosing sexual abuse under fire

Update: Mother dead, child in critical condition after carbon monoxide poisoning at Shuswap campground

The woman was found unresponsive insider her tent and the youth was taken via air ambulance to hospital

Canada’s parole officers say correctional system has reached breaking point

About half of Canada’s federal parole officers work inside penitentiaries and correctional institutions

Montreal researchers create audible hockey puck for visually impaired players

Three years ago, Gilles Ouellet came up with the idea for a puck that makes a continuous sound

Former B.C. Greyhound bus drivers head to Penticton for goodbye party

Big bash runs until Sunday, funded by drink cans left behind on busses over the years

Boy, 12, arrested after allegedly pulling a knife on another child at a Surrey park

The child was later released into his parents’ custody as Surrey RCMP continue their investigation

Full-scale search underway for missing kayaker on Okanagan Lake

Kelowna Paddle Centre member Zygmunt Janiewicz, 71, failed to return from his ‘daily kayak’ on the lake

ICBC urging drivers to slow down this May long weekend

Speed is number one cause of car crash fatalities: ICBC

Bucks hammer Raptors 125-103 to take 2-0 playoff series lead

Toronto heads home in a hole after second loss to Milwaukee

Most Read