Researchers at Mayo Clinic’s campus in Jacksonville and Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va., through their technology commercialization efforts, have licensed compounds to Astra Zeneca for potential new drug therapies to treat depression. The collaboration advances both the development of novel compounds and supports ongoing research by Mayo and Virginia Tech in the area of triple reuptake inhibitors.
According to Elliott Richelson, M.D., Mayo Clinic, this is important because triple reuptake inhibitors block reuptake of the neurotransmitters serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. Certain antidepressants currently available for patients suffering from depression, work by inhibiting or blocking serotonin reuptake. Others block both serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake. A key element in the way nerve cells work is when a neurotransmitter is released to relay its message, it returns to the nerve ending from which it was released. The mechanism of taking the neurotransmitter back into the nerve ending is called reuptake. In depression there are fewer neurotransmitters being released in the brain. By blocking the reuptake of all three neurotransmitters more neurotransmitters can be sent to the nerve cells. Mayo’s collaboration focuses on a new class of antidepressants that block the reuptake of all three neurotransmitters.
Below is a link to an edited youtube video with Dr. Richelson.