20 0 0 1 month ago 4 min to read

DOST increases funding for research on addiction and depression

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According to a spokesperson on Monday, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) continues to fund research on potential therapies for depression and addiction.

The projects “Cessation of Toluene (Rugby) Addiction in Adolescents: Using a Rodent Model” and “Assessment Pharmacokinetic and Pharmacodynamic Interactions of Selected Psychobiotic and Antidepressant Drugs in Depression-like Rat Model” each received at least PHP67 million.

The sum also covers the cost of operating the National Institutes of Health’s freshly remodeled animal laboratory in Manila.

DOST Undersecretary Leah Buendia told the Philippine News Agency that these studies “would be very valuable to clinicians in developing novel treatments in a mouse model that can subsequently be utilized as a reference in investigating human abusers of toluene.”

She continued by saying that this will help researchers since they will have a better knowledge of how toluene exposure over a prolonged period of time alters brain circuits. The general public, healthcare providers, and patients may all use the findings.

When sertraline, fluoxetine, and psychobiotics are given together in depression-like rat models, the DOST stated that the trials will capture data on preventing adverse drug events and achieving therapeutic success. Measurements of behavioral responses, biochemical levels, and medication concentrations are also part of the experiment.

The consequences of abstinence from toluene on behavior and the nervous system are now being studied by researchers. It is anticipated that the investigations will last until January 2024.

The money, which was provided by the DOST’s Novel Approaches to Treatment of Addiction and Depression Using Animal Models program, according to Buendia, includes renovating the animal laboratory, which can currently only support two experiments due to space constraints.

The DOST hopes to continue funding this research in the future in order to build out the UP NIH’s facilities and resources.

The health, safety, and well-being of Filipinos will be supported by further high-impact investments, according to Buendia.

She claimed that the laboratory makeover made a place for new furnishings, fixtures, equipment, lighting, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning.

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