Stress-relieving drug discovered by Cork scientists that reduces anxiety

Cork scientists have discovered a stress-relieving drug that reduces social withdrawal, anxiety and depression in people resistant to existing therapies.

Scientists and physicians agree that there is an urgent need for more effective treatments for anxiety and depression with a new mode of action that can work in up to 30 percent of people who are unresponsive to current medications.

“Our research represents a significant advance,” said Prof Cryan, a scientist involved in the work at UCC and APC Microbiome Ireland.

Groundbreaking research reported in the journal Molecular PsychiatryCork scientists showed that a drug that suppressed the activity of a protein called FKBP51 increased resistance to chronic stress.

People exposed to prolonged (chronic) or severe stress experience intense, persistent, and excessive worrying about everyday situations.

This chronic stress — which is different from normal occasional stress that everyone experiences — increases a person’s vulnerability to stress-related anxiety and depression, which cause illness and death.

“Chronic stress repeatedly triggers the flight-or-fight response that puts you at risk for health problems,” said Dr. Olivia O’Leary, also from UCC and APC Microbiome Ireland, who was involved in the research effort.

“Our data position FKBP51 as an extremely important target for the development of new drugs to treat stress-related brain diseases, which still have such an unmet medical need,” she added.

Researchers found that chronic treatment with the drug prevented stress-related social withdrawal and stress-related anxiety.

dr Martin Codagnone was another scientist involved in the breakthrough.

The scientists applied the drug directly to cells from an area of ​​the brain called the hippocampus, which is involved in regulating anxiety, mood and memory. This strengthened and supported the growth of these critical cells. Stress-relieving drug discovered by Cork scientists that reduces anxiety

Fry Electronics Team

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