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Interception of Cocaine by Enzyme or Antibody Delivered with Viral Gene Transfer: A Novel Strategy for Preventing Relapse in Recovering Drug Users

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Recent progress in enzyme engineering has led to versions of human butyrylcholinesterase (BChE) that hydrolyze cocaine efficiently in plasma, reduce concentrations reaching reward neurocircuity in the brain, and weaken behavioral responses to this drug. Along with enzyme advances, increasingly avid anti-cocaine antibodies and potent anti-cocaine vaccines have also been developed. Here we review these developments and consider the potential advantages along with the risks of delivering drug-intercepting proteins via gene transfer approaches to treat cocaine addiction.

Keywords: Adeno-associated viral vector; BChE; Cocaine; Cytomegalovirus; butyrylcholinesterase; cocain hydrolase; cocaine vaccine; gene therapy; helper-dependent viral vector; hydrolytic cleavage; keyhole limpet hemocyanin; monoclonal antibody

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2011-12-01

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  • CNS & Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets aims to cover all the latest and outstanding developments on the medicinal chemistry, pharmacology, molecular biology, genomics and biochemistry of contemporary molecular targets involved in neurological and central nervous system (CNS) disorders e.g. disease specific proteins, receptors, enzymes, genes. Each issue of the journal will contain a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of current topics on drug targets involved in neurological and CNS disorders. As the discovery, identification, characterization and validation of novel human drug targets for neurological and CNS drug discovery continues to grow; this journal will be essential reading for all pharmaceutical scientists involved in drug discovery and development.
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