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Study finds supplement reduces use in cocaine-dependent bipolar patients

July 9, 2015
by Gary A. Enos, Editor
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A brand-name version of the psychostimulant citicoline reduced cocaine use in a group of 130 outpatients with both cocaine dependence and bipolar disorder, according to a new study published online this week.

Led by E. Sherwood Brown, MD, PhD, professor of psychiatry at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, the study found that the branded Cognizin form of citicoline resulted in significant reductions in cocaine use compared with placebo, and with no major impact on patient mood. Patients with co-occurring bipolar disorder and substance dependence generally experience numerous complications related to the disorders.

Citicoline, a natural substance found in every cell, helps to maintain normal levels of acetylcholine, which regulates memory and cognitive function. Other research has indicated that it may be useful in the treatment of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

“Citicoline has several mechanisms of action, and based on results of previous studies, it's possible that citicoline can impact dopamine levels in the brain,” Danielle Citrolo, manager of technical services at Kyowa Hakko USA, maker of Cognizin, said in a July 7 news release from the company.

The 12-week placebo-controlled study was published online in the American Journal of Psychiatry.