In a new study, tamoxifen citrate (Nolvadex drug, AstraZeneca), best known as a treatment for breast cancer, dramatically reduced symptoms of the manic phase of bipolar disorder more quickly than many standard medications for the mentalillness. By the end of the study, 63% of the patients taking tamoxifen had reduced manic symptoms, compared with only 13% of those taking a placebo. Patients taking generic tamoxifen responded by the fifth day.
Researchers at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) explained that buy tamoxifen blocks an enzyme called proteinkinase C (PKC), which regulates activities in brain cells. The enzyme is thought to be overactive during the manic phase of bipolar disorder.
By pointing to PKC as a target for new drugs, the study raises the possibility of developing faster-acting treatments for the manic phase of the illness. Current medications for the manic phase generally take more than a week to begin working.
However, it is not clear whether tamoxifen will become a treatment of choice; it blocks estrogen, which makes it useful as a treatment for breast cancer—but it may cause endometrial cancer if it is taken over long periods of time.
(Sources:Bipolar Disord, September 2007.)