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Antipsychotic Drug Trifluoperazine May Block Opiate Addiction

There always seems to be constant activity happening around the addiction and recovery scene. I’m surprised that this particular piece of research and information has not been more widely publicized and vented through multiple news channels, however that is why it is important for us to blog here at CalmSupport to assist in the ventilation of information and research regarding opiate addiction and recovery.

In 2006, researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago discovered the potential for treating addiction with an antipsychotic medication called trifluoperazine. They injected half a milligram into mice that were addicted to the opiate drug Morphine and found dramatic results.

Incredibly, after a few hours – their addiction had vanished. They were no longer dependent or showing a physiological addiction to the morphine. Assistant Professor of Pharmacology in the UIC College of Pharmacy Z. Jim Wang discusses how the trifluoperazine delivers the results:

“...From studies conducted in the 1970s and 1980s, we know that trifluoperazine inhibits calmodulin," Wang said, a molecule that is required for the activation of an enzyme called calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase-2. "In previous studies we performed at UIC, we know that CaMK-2 plays an important role in the generation and maintenance of opioid tolerance," he said. Tolerance is a hallmark of drug dependence.

"...Trifluoperazine targets this pathway, which then stops the addiction," Wang said. "When this occurs, you can still use a relatively low dose of the painkiller to achieve fairly good pain control and no drug dependence...”.

I would like to see some extensive human clinical trials for patients both dependent and addicted to opiate-based painkillers undergoing treatment with trifluoperazine medication to determine the efficacy of the drug and its ability to suppress dependence and addiction.

For many addicts, the fear of withdrawal and initial recovery stops them from seeking help to detox from their dependence and/or addiction. If we had another method to assist in the treatment of opiate drug dependence and addiction that could essentially alter the physiological properties of opioid-tolerance – this would be a major advantage in the fight to maintain sobriety and recovery from opiate dependence and addiction.

If you are currently dependent or addicted to an opioid-based painkiller, consider your options in consultation with your doctor or physician. Ask the question whether there is further information and/or research regarding the use of trifluoperazine as an agent to assist in the management of opiate withdrawal and recovery.

Remember, each and every addict and recovering addict on this planet deserves a fresh start and a chance to change their lives. Start today, and change your life for the better.


  1. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/02/060213092323.htm

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