N-acetylcysteine in psychiatry - current therapeutic evidence and potential mechanisms of action
Dean, Olivia, Giorlando, Frank and Berk, Michael 2011, N-acetylcysteine in psychiatry - current therapeutic evidence and potential mechanisms of action, Journal of psychiatry and neuroscience, vol. 36, no. 2, pp. 78-86.
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There is an expanding field of research investigating the benefits of alternatives to current pharmacological therapies in psychiatry. N-acetylcysteine (NAC) is emerging as a useful agent in the treatment of psychiatric disorders. Like many therapies, the clinical origins of NAC are far removed from its current use in psychiatry. Whereas the mechanisms of NAC are only beginning to be understood, it is likely that NAC is exerting benefits beyond being a precursor to the antioxidant, glutathione, modulating glutamatergic, neurotropic and inflammatory pathways. This review outlines the current literature regarding the use of NAC in disorders including addiction, compulsive and grooming disorders, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. N-acetylcysteine has shown promising results in populations with these disorders, including those in whom treatment efficacy has previously been limited. The therapeutic potential of this acetylated amino acid is beginning to emerge in the field of psychiatric research.
First published online: June 24, 2010
Field of Research
119999 Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective
970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
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