Most Read Articles
11 Sep 2017
An inverse association exists between systolic blood pressure (SBP) in young adults and depression and anxiety score, independent of a range of lifestyle confounders, according to a recent study. Furthermore, the inverse association between SBP and self-reported history of depression is enhanced by adiposity despite a positive correlation between BP and body mass index (BMI).
Dr. Joseph Delano Fule Robles, 04 Sep 2017

A recent genome-wide association study (GWAS) performed by investigators from the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) has found potential new indications for existing drugs for the treatment of various psychiatric disorders. 

13 Sep 2017
The likelihood of suicidal ideation, suicide attempts and completed suicides is substantially greater in patients with psoriasis, according to a recent study. Among these patients, those who are younger and whose psoriasis is more severe are at risk of suicidality.
Roshini Claire Anthony, 05 Sep 2017

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) may improve gross motor function, disability, and quality of life (QoL) among patients recovering from stroke, according to a systematic review and meta-analysis.

V1a receptor blockade improves social communication in adults with ASD

13 Aug 2017

Treatment with the arginine vasopressin receptor 1A (V1a) antagonist, RG7713, induces subtle improvements in social communication surrogates including eye tracking and affective speech recognition (ASR), among others, in adults with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder (ASD), a study has shown.

The multicentre cross-over study included 19 high-functioning adult male patients with ASD (full scale IQ >70; ABC-Irritability subscale ≤13; mean age 23.4 years). All patients received a single 20 mg dose of RG7713 or placebo administered intravenously as a 2-hour infusion on two different treatment visits (1 and 2), separated by a 7- to 14-day washout period.

Efficacy outcomes included exploratory biomarkers (eye tracking), and behavioural and clinical measures of social cognition and communication (eg, ASR, reading the mind in the eyes, olfactory identification, scripted interaction). Safety and tolerability were also evaluated.

Results showed that treatment with RG7713 produced an increase in biological motion orienting preference in eye tracking (p=0.047) and a nonsignificant improvement in the composite score (p=0.29). The V1a antagonist also reduced the ability to detect lust (p=0.03) and fear (p=0.07) in ASR. However, the reduction was nonsignificant (p=0.59) when all eight individual emotion subscales were combined into an overall ASR performance score.

In terms of safety, a total of 13 adverse events were reported in 10 patients, all of which were mild (11 of 13) or moderate (2 of 13) in severity.

Researchers noted that the observed effects of RG7713 were quantitatively small, and the lack of statistically significant results may suggest that the study was underpowered to detect them.

“Although the 8-hour efficacy assessment window was supported by the drug exposure data (cerebrospinal fluid concentrations remained at approximately the same level during that time, as measured in a phase I single-ascending dose study), some effects may only emerge with longer continuous treatment, and may not be apparent yet, or only partially so, in a single-dose study,” they added. [J Med Chem 2015;58:2275–228]

Notwithstanding, the preliminary findings of the effects of a single 20 mg dose and the use of exploratory biomarkers support further clinical investigation of V1a receptor antagonism as a therapeutic approach to treat core symptoms in ASD, researchers concluded.

Editor's Recommendations
Most Read Articles
11 Sep 2017
An inverse association exists between systolic blood pressure (SBP) in young adults and depression and anxiety score, independent of a range of lifestyle confounders, according to a recent study. Furthermore, the inverse association between SBP and self-reported history of depression is enhanced by adiposity despite a positive correlation between BP and body mass index (BMI).
Dr. Joseph Delano Fule Robles, 04 Sep 2017

A recent genome-wide association study (GWAS) performed by investigators from the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) has found potential new indications for existing drugs for the treatment of various psychiatric disorders. 

13 Sep 2017
The likelihood of suicidal ideation, suicide attempts and completed suicides is substantially greater in patients with psoriasis, according to a recent study. Among these patients, those who are younger and whose psoriasis is more severe are at risk of suicidality.
Roshini Claire Anthony, 05 Sep 2017

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) may improve gross motor function, disability, and quality of life (QoL) among patients recovering from stroke, according to a systematic review and meta-analysis.