Using cryoEM technology, researchers have decoded the detailed structures of an entire family of opioid receptors bound to their naturally occurring peptides. This new structural framework should help in the development of safer, more effective medications to treat chronic pain.
A newly developed vaccine blocks the ability of the opioid Fentanyl's ability to enter the brain, thus blocking the drug's "high".
Opioid withdrawal cuts off the supply of serotonin to the nucleus accumbens, dramatically reducing sociability in mice and increasing social aversion.
Researchers are developing a monthly monoclonal antibody therapy for the treatment and management of chronic pain. The hope is this new therapy can replace opioids for pain management.
Cognitive behavioral therapy for pain that is supported by artificial intelligence renders the same results as guideline-recommended programs while requiring less clinician time, thus making the option more accessible for patients.
Opioids impact the gut microbiome of developing fetuses, altering metabolic pathways and increasing the risks of both neurological and behavioral differences later in life.
Centralized sensation, or abnormal pain processing in the brain and spinal cord, may be an important underlying factor complicating the treatment of chronic pain in those with opioid use disorder.
Study reveals 27.8% of pain medications with high abuse potential make it all the way through the development process, compared to only 4.7% of medications with lower potential for abuse.
Exposure to the opioid fentanyl induces autism-like behaviors in mice by activating mu-opioid receptors in the anterior cingulate cortex.
Opioid use disorder affects genes associated with proinflammatory immune molecule encoding and genes associated with remodeling the extracellular matrix, suggesting the connection between neurons may be altered as a result of opioid use. Additionally, those with OUD have higher levels of microglia in the brain.
Researchers say older adults who feel lonely are twice as likely to use opioids to control pain, and 2.5 times more likely to be prescribed anti-anxiety medications and sedatives than those who have a more socially active lifestyle.