Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers seek genetic clues to identify addicts and patients who will benefit from treatment

29.07.2002


Toxicology experts have long known that individuals can exhibit a wide range of physiological responses when exposed to identical doses of opiate- or morphine-based drugs. This drug class includes illicit drugs such as heroin, as well as regulated drugs like methadone and oxycontin, which have legitimate uses in addiction treatment and pain management. Unfortunately, an individual’s response to these drugs can be gauged only after the drug has been administered, leaving care givers to make an educated guess as to how much drug to give in order to achieve the intended effect.



Now, a team of researchers suggests that “pharmacogenomic” testing may be a way to help drug-treatment centers select appropriate treatment regimens for their opiate-addicted patients, and it may also provide valuable information in the care of patients who require substantial levels of pharmacological pain management.

Background


The most common treatment for heroin addiction is methadone, used because of its ability to produce psychic and physical dependence, but with significantly milder withdrawal symptoms than heroin. Previously published studies have documented methadone toxicity and noted a higher risk in the initial treatment periods for some patients.

Scientists know that the toxicity of this synthetic narcotic is affected in part by a patient’s metabolism of the drug. Methadone is metabolized by enzymes CYP1A2, CYP2D6 and CYP 3A4. CYP 2D6 is unique in that it is also a key to the metabolism of other opioids, such as codeine and tricyclic antidepressants.

A recent peer-reviewed article—“Pharmacogenomics as Molecular Autopsy for Forensic Pathology/Toxicology: Does Genotyping CYP 296 Serve as an Adjunct for Certifying Methadone Toxicity?”—looks at the possibility of using laboratory-based testing to identify genetic polymorphisms that affect the way an individual metabolizes the opioid class of drugs. The authors are Steven H. Wong, PhD; Michael A. Wagner, PhD; Jeffrey M. Jentzen, MD; Chuck Shur; Jeanette Bjerke; Susan B. Gock; and Chung-Che Jeffrey Chang, MD, PhD, all with the Department of Pathology, Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. Drs. Wong, Wagner, Jentzen, and Ms. Gock are also affiliated with the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Results

In their current study, the authors conclude that complex medical and prescription histories often make it difficult to conclude that a CYP 2D6-encoded enzyme deficiency is the sole cause of a methadone mortality, or even contributed to death. They also note that the results generated by their genotyping investigations would not have prompted a change in the medical examiners ruling on cause of death. Nevertheless, the authors say that their study is an important first step in the effort to link genotyping with individuals’ responses to treatment therapies such as methadone, and that establishing this relationship will have a great impact in drug-abuse treatment and pain management.


This study is being presented at the 54th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC) in Orlando, Fla., July 29-August 1, 2002. AACC (http://www.aacc.org/) is the scientific organization for clinical laboratory professionals, physicians, and research scientists. Their primary commitment is the understanding of laboratory testing to identify, monitor and treat human disease. More than 14,000 attendees are expected for the meeting, which is being held at the Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, Fla., July 28-August 1, 2002.

Donna J. Krupa | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.aacc.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Cystic fibrosis alters the structure of mucus in airways
28.06.2017 | University of Iowa Health Care

nachricht Mice provide insight into genetics of autism spectrum disorders
28.06.2017 | University of California - Davis

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

High conductive foils enabling large area lighting

29.06.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Designed proteins to treat muscular dystrophy

29.06.2017 | Life Sciences

Climate Fluctuations & Non-equilibrium Statistical Mechanics: An Interdisciplinary Dialog

29.06.2017 | Seminars Workshops

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>