Anti-Diarrheal Medication May Help Treat Core Autism Symptoms

Although drug treatments for the core symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are not currently available, could an existing drug provide a new treatment, even if it previously had no association with ASD? This was the question asked in a new study published on September 12, 2022 in the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology. The open-access article is titled “Drug Repurposing Candidates to Treat Core Symptoms in Autism Spectrum Disorder.” The researchers used a computer model that encompasses proteins involved in ASD and the way they interact. By looking at how different drugs affected proteins in the system, the scientists identified potential candidates to treat it. A commonly used anti-diarrheal drug called loperamide was the most promising candidate, and the researchers have an interesting hypothesis about how it may work to treat ASD symptoms.
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