It’s been decades since the last meaningful advance in treating schizophrenia emerged. But a new medicine for treating this complex, debilitating disease might be on the horizon if work by Sunovion Pharmaceuticals scientists pans out.
Sunovion’s experimental drug, dubbed SEP-363856, uses a different molecular pathway than existing antipsychotic medications, which target the receptor for dopamine, a neurotransmitter that plays a role in schizophrenia. According to a 245-person clinical trial, the drug might help ease a wider swath of schizophrenia symptoms than its pharmacologic peers. Last year, SEP-363856 was granted breakthrough status by the Food and Drug Administration.