Schizophrenia Drug Offers New Hope
Works on different brain chemical than its predecessors
By Colleen Barry,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 3, 2007 3:58 AM CDT
A women leaves the Eli Lilly and Company campus in an Indianapolis file photo from April 18, 2006.   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The first human trial of a new medication to treat schizophrenia that works fundamentally differently from its predecessors has shown promising results, according to this month's Nature Medicine. The drug targets glutamate rather than dopamine, as do other drugs. Scientists have long known glutamate is involved in schizophrenia.

The new drug alleviates symptom with few of the side effects of current anti-psychotics, such as tremors and weight gain. Drug manufacturer Eli Lilly plans to determine the optimal dosage for the medication before moving on to the final stage of testing and filing for FDA approval. Schizophrenia, which can involve delusions and hallucinations, affects 1% of the population, about the same as diabetes.