Heroin Vaccine In Works May Prevent Overdose, Help Users Quit
It’s well-known that heroin addiction can be incredibly challenging to overcome because of painful withdrawal symptoms and the high rate of relapse. However, researchers are testing a new vaccine to help heroin users break their habit by neutralizing the drug’s effect before the sensation reaches the brain.
Heroin Vaccine Hopeful To Prevent Overdose And Help Users Quit
Currently being tested at Scripps Research Institute in San Diego, California, the new vaccine could make it potentially impossible for a user to overdose on the drug.
“We haven’t seen any rats relapse,” says George Kobb, one of the vaccine’s developer’s. “We’re guessing it would be unbelievably expensive for someone to try to overdose on heroin with this vaccine. It’d probably take a dealer’s whole stash.”
The study for the vaccine is providing a group of rats with unlimited access to the drug over a four week period of time and then is detoxifying them over the course of several weeks. The group was divided with half receiving the vaccine and the other half not. Interestingly, blood samples from the rats that received the vaccine showed that the heroin quickly dissipated in their bloodstreams and had a weaker effect. The vaccine was also found to not block some forms of heroin addiction treatment, such as buprenorphine and methadone.
The goal of the vaccine is to stop users from the cycle of taking more and more heroin. The research team hopes to acquire funding to begin human trials.
Help Is Available For Heroin Addiction
While this vaccine is currently being studied and is not available to those suffering from heroin addiction, there are effective treatments available. At Serenity at Summit, we offer medically supervised detox as well as individualized treatment programs developed by licensed, skilled physicians.
Are you or someone you love struggling with heroin addiction? The first step is entering a medically supervised detox program to safely eliminate the drug from your body. We believe that a holistic approach is the best way to do this.
We encourage you to call to learn more about how we can help you overcome this challenging addiction. Local treatment is available.