Psychedelic drugs promote neural plasticity in rats and flies

Psychedelic drugs may have mind-altering powers in the physical sense, too. A new study has found psychedelics, specifically DOI, DMT, and LSD, can change brain cells in rats and flies, making neurons more likely to branch out and connect with one another. The work supports the theory that psychedelics could help to fight depression, anxiety, addiction, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Source: Science Daily

Bourdain, Spade suicides highlight need for new depression drugs

Bourdain, Spade suicides highlight need for new depression drugsBy Julie Steenhuysen CHICAGO (Reuters) – The suicides this week of Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade have cast fresh light on the need for more effective treatments for major depression, an area that has been largely abandoned by big pharmaceutical companies. With the availability of numerous cheap generic antidepressants, many of which offer only marginal benefit, developing medicines for depression is a tough sell. Drugmakers have 140 therapies in development targeting mental health issues, including 39 aimed at depression, according to the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America trade group.


Source: Yahoo! News

Half of hepatitis C patients with private insurance denied life-saving drugs

The number of insurance denials for life-saving hepatitis C drugs among patients with both private and public insurers remains high across the United States. Private insurers had the highest denial rates, with 52.4 percent of patients denied coverage, while Medicaid denied 34.5 percent of patients and Medicare denied 14.7 percent.
Source: Science Daily

Structure of protein pair provides blueprint for future drugs

Researchers have visualized for the first time how the protein SOCS1 ‘switches off’ cell signalling to dampen immune responses and block cancer growth. The atomic-level structure of SOCS1 binding to its partner protein JAK could guide the development of drugs that alter disease-causing cell signalling pathways, and may have applications for treating some blood cancers, including leukaemias.
Source: Science Daily