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Interesting article on Amoxapine,

Posted by Jaynee on January 16, 2003, at 18:42:14

Personally, I've never heard of this drug, but I thought this was an interesting article.


Amoxapine shows atypical antipsychotic effects
Amoxapine, despite being marketed as an antidepressant, may act as an atypical antipsychotic drug, a Mexican study reveals.

Several features point to amoxapine's potential as an atypical antipsychotic, observe Rogelios Apiquian (Ramon de la Fuente National Institute of Psychiatry, Mexico City) and colleagues. For example, the drug blocks the serotonin 5HT2 and the dopamine D4 receptors much more potently than it blocks the D2 receptor.

In addition, a recent PET study in healthy volunteers demonstrated saturation levels of 5HT2 occupancy (98%) and only modest 2 occupancy (63%), which is a similar receptor occupancy profile seen with several of the new atypical antipsychotics.

With these factors in mind, the researchers conducted a prospective, open label study in which 16 patients with schizophrenia were treated with 150250 mg/day of amoxapine for 6 weeks.

Weekly assessments revealed a highly significant improvement in positive, negative, and total scores on the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (p<0.001). Significant improvements were evident from week 2, increasing throughout the course of the study to reach a final improvement of 2967%.

In addition, mood symptoms showed a steady improvement, with scores on the Calgary Depression Scale for Schizophrenia significantly reduced by week 6 (p=0.01).

Importantly, there were no significant increases in extrapyramidal symptoms, akathisia or weight gain, and the main side-effects reported dry mouth, constipation, and tension were considered only mild or moderate.

"Given amoxapine's known antidepressant effects, its lack of weight gain, and the fact that it is considerably less expensive than the newer atypical antipsychotics amoxapine may be a valuable antipsychotic alternative," say the researchers in the journal Schizophrenia Research.

"Particularly for patients who cannot afford, or, for other reasons, cannot access the newer atypical antipsychotics," they add.

Schizophr Res 2003; 59: 3539 [not yet available online]


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