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Sunol C.,Institute Dinvestigacions Biomediques Of Barcelona
Methods in Molecular Biology | Year: 2011

Glutamate is the mayor excitatory neurotransmitter in vertebrate nervous system. It has a crucial role in most brain functions under physiological conditions through the activation of both ionotropic and metabotropic glutamate receptors. In addition, extracellular glutamate concentration is tightly regulated through different excitatory amino acid transporters (EAAT). Glutamate neurotransmission is also involved in the neurotoxic effects of many environmental chemicals and drugs. Furthermore, homeostatic changes in glutamate neurotransmission appear in response to prolonged block/enhancement of electrical activity. Here, we describe different approaches to evaluate alterations in glutamate neurotransmission regarding glutamate receptors and glutamate transporters by using primary cultures of neurons and astrocytes. The methods are based on the increased fluorescence of calcium-sensitive probes in response to glutamate agonists, on radioligand binding to glutamate receptors and transport sites, and on inmunocytochemistry visualization of glutamate receptors. © 2011 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Source

Alvarez E.,University of Barcelona | Perez V.,University of Barcelona | Dragheim M.,Lundbeck | Loft H.,Lundbeck | And 2 more authors.
International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology | Year: 2012

The efficacy, safety, and tolerability of Lu AA21004 vs. placebo using venlafaxine XR as active reference in patients with DSM-IV-TR major depressive disorder (MDD) were evaluated. Lu AA21004 is a novel antidepressant that is a 5-HT3 and 5-HT7 receptor antagonist, 5-HT1A receptor agonist, 5-HT1B receptor partial agonist and inhibitor of the 5-HT transporter in recombinant cell lines. In this 6-wk, multi-site study, 429 patients were randomly assigned (1:1:1:1) to 5 or 10 mg Lu AA21004, placebo or 225 mg venlafaxine XR. All patients had a baseline Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) total score ≥30. The primary efficacy analysis was based on the MADRS total score adjusting for multiplicity using a hierarchical testing procedure starting with the highest dose vs. placebo. Lu AA21004 was statistically significantly superior to placebo (n=105) in mean change from baseline in MADRS total score at week 6 (p<0.0001, last observation carried forward), with a mean treatment difference vs. placebo of 5.9 (5 mg, n=108), and 5.7 (10 mg, n=100) points. Venlafaxine XR (n=112) was also significantly superior to placebo at week 6 (p<0.0001). In total, 30 patients withdrew due to adverse events (AEs)-placebo: four (4%); 5 mg Lu AA21004: three (3%); 10 mg Lu AA21004: seven (7%); and venlafaxine: 16 (14%). The most common AEs were nausea, headache, hyperhidrosis, and dry mouth. No clinically relevant changes over time were seen in the clinical laboratory results, vital signs, weight, or ECG parameters. In this study, treatment with 5 mg and 10 mg Lu AA21004 for 6 wk was efficacious and well tolerated in patients with MDD. © 2011 CINP and Cambridge University Press. Source

Xaubet A.,University of Barcelona | Serrano-Mollar A.,Institute Dinvestigacions Biomediques Of Barcelona | Ancochea J.,Hospital Universitario Of La Princesa
Expert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy | Year: 2014

Introduction: Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a chronic, progressive and lethal fibrosing interstitial pneumonia. The median survival from the onset of the symptoms is 2.8-4.2 years and the 5-year survival rate is 20%. Its poor prognosis, combined with the scarcity of treatment options, provides a strong rationale for the development of novel therapeutic strategies. During the past decade there has been a huge rise in clinical trials with anti-fibrotic drugs, although only pirfenidone (Esbriet) has shown a beneficial effect. Areas covered: This article reviews the medical literature on the effectiveness and safety of pirfenidone in IPF, by means of a PubMed search from 1995 to present, completed with some data on file from the manufacturer. Expert opinion: Pirfenidone is the only anti-fibrotic drug approved for the treatment of IPF. Pirfenidone provides a meaningful clinical effect on reductions in the decrease in forced vital capacity (FVC), six-minute walk test (6MWT) distance and mortality, and it improves the progression-free survival in IPF patients with mild-to-moderate disease. Pirfenidone is well tolerated, with the most common side-effects being gastrointestinal discomfort and photosensitivity. Pirfenidone has a favorable benefit-risk profile and represents a suitable treatment option for patients with mild-to-moderate IPF. © Informa UK, Ltd. Source

Chamorro A.,University of Barcelona | Chamorro A.,Institute Dinvestigacions Biomediques Agusti Pi i Sunyer | Dirnagl U.,Charite - Medical University of Berlin | Dirnagl U.,German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases | And 4 more authors.
The Lancet Neurology | Year: 2016

Treatments for acute ischaemic stroke continue to evolve after the superior value of endovascular thrombectomy was confirmed over systemic thrombolysis. Unfortunately, numerous neuroprotective drugs have failed to show benefit in the treatment of acute ischaemic stroke, making the search for new treatments imperative. Increased awareness of the relevance of rigorous preclinical testing, and appropriate selection of study participants, might overcome the barriers to progress in stroke research. Relevant areas of interest include the search for safe and effective treatment strategies that combine neuroprotection reperfusion, better use of advanced brain imaging for patient selection, and wider implementation of prehospital conducted clinical trials. Randomised controlled trials of combination treatments completed within the past 5 years have included growth factors, hypothermia, minocycline, natalizumab, fingolimod, and uric acid; the latter two drugs with alteplase produced encouraging results. Blocking of excitotoxicity is also being reassessed in clinical trials with new approaches, such as the postsynaptic density-95 inhibitor NA-1, or peritoneal dialysis to remove excess glutamate. The findings of these randomised trials are anticipated to improve treatment options and clinical outcomes in of patients with acute stroke. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Alvarez E.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Perez V.,Ministry of Science and Innovation | Perez V.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Artigas F.,Ministry of Science and Innovation | Artigas F.,Institute Dinvestigacions Biomediques Of Barcelona
Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment | Year: 2014

Vortioxetine is a new multimodal action antidepressant with two types of action: serotonin transporter (SERT) blockade and a strong affinity for several serotoninergic receptors. It is an antagonist of the 5-HT3 and 5-HT7 receptors, a partial agonist of 5-HT1B, and an agonist of 5-HT1A. Its combined action on SERT and four subtypes of serotoninergic receptors increases the extracellular concentration of serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline. Twelve clinical trials have been carried out, nine of which had positive results versus placebo. When active comparators were included in the study design, no significant differences were found except in one study in which the efficacy of vortioxetine was superior to the comparator (agomelatine) in depression resistant to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI)/serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRI) treatment. Tolerability studies indicate that the drug does not cause any important problems on blood tests, vital signs, or on electrocardiography. The lack of weight gain and induction of metabolic syndrome and the lack of significant changes in the QTc are especially important. The incidence rate of sexual dysfunction is low and similar to placebo in various trials. Similarly, cognitive function remains intact with vortioxetine. © 2014 Alvarez et al. Source

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