Promising clinical trial with a new substance against brain fatigue

A new drug against brain fatigue is undergoing a clinical trial at the Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Gothenburg, Sweden. Brain fatigue can arise as a consequence of among other things a stroke or a brain injury after an accident. A paralyzing fatigue, concentration difficulties, and an increased sensitivity to sounds and light are typcial symtoms of brain fatigue.

The results are promising. Most of the patients got rid of their fatigue already after a few days of medication. The only side effect was an upset stomach which disappeared when the dose was lowered. The fatigue returned when the medication ceased. Twelve patients between the age of 30 and 65 participated in the study, which was double blind. An extended study with 30 patients is now being planned.

The clinical study took place at the Stroke Forum under the direction of its head, Dr. Elisabeth Nordqvist-Brandt, as well as neurology professor Lars Rönnbäck. They are cooperating with Nobel Prize Winner Arvid Carlsson, associate professor Maria Carlsson, and neuropsychologist Birgitta Johansson. The clinical trial is a cooperation between the Sahlgrenska Hospital and the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg.

The drug, a substance called OSU6162, was developed by Arvid Carlsson and Maria Carlsson together with their collaborators. This molecule has the ability to stabilize the chemical messengers dopamine and serotonin in the brain. The substance was synthesized already in the eighties in cooperation with Upjohn, a drug company which also owned the patent of the molecule. OSU6162 proved to have positive effects in early trials of Parkinson's disease as well as Huntington's disease and schizophrenia. However, no further development of the drug took place. In 2007 Arvid Carlsson acquired the rights to do further work in order to develop the drug.

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