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  • MindMate Staff

Medical Innovation - The most promising clinical trials in 2020 for Mental health

All eyes are on the current developments of COVID-19 and clinical research is working overtime in order to find a cure and a vaccine for the future. But besides medical innovation to end the pandemic, there are currently also other very promising clinical trials for a variety of different indications, which may change the future for many patients living with chronic conditions. Let’s take a look. 

Developments in Depression Research

According to the World Health Organization, more than 264 million people across the globe suffer from depression, and around 800,000 people each year die due to suicide.

In May 2020, it was announced that current clinical trials are being carried out testing the efficacy of arketamine as an alternative to classic antidepressants for depression therapy. Ketamine is a psychoactive, dissociative drug, which has been commonly used as general anaesthetic and sedative for 50 years. Enantiomers of ketamine are esketemine and arketamine and have subtle but essential differences in how they act within the body. Esketamine has currently been approved by the FDA for the use in treatment-resistant depression. Arketamine, on the other hand, has not received a lot of attention so far, even though it had shown promising fewer psychotomimetic side effects than esketamine in animal studies. The study of Perception Neuroscience is now testing if arketamine could be a promising alternative for depression therapy. 

According to Dr Terence Kelly, CEO of Perception Neuroscience, the study is hoping to prove two things: 1. That arketamine is just as good as esketamine and 2. that the side effects of the drug are gentler. The clinical trial is currently in phase I and, if approved, could mean a breakthrough in depression and opioid use disorder.

A promising experimental drug for Schizophrenia

New findings of an early clinical research study published in April 2020 in the New England Journal of Medicine, have suggested a new experimental drug, which may ease a variety of symptoms associated with schizophrenia, without strong side effects of existing medicines. 

Researchers found that out of 120 clinical trial participants who took the drug dubbed SEP-363856, 65% were responsive by week four. The drug helped manage the different symptoms of schizophrenia, such as delusion, hallucinations, flattened emotions and social withdrawal. 

The development of this drug would mean a breakthrough in schizophrenia research, as many current drugs are already decades old and the side effects have proven to be difficult for people living with the condition. The drug would cater to an existing need in research and would mean an improvement for patients.

Making a difference for medical innovation

There are currently over many clinical trials in the United States actively recruiting patients for research studies. Do you want to make medical history and make a difference for your community? Clinical trials need volunteers in order to test new treatments effectively and bring them to the mass market. If you want to learn more about clinical trials, the benefits, and risks and see if this would be something for you, please visit our clinical trial education website here.


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