March 31, 2005

Preliminary results from research conducted under the NIDA Distinguished International Scientist Collaboration Awards (DISCA) suggest that fluoxetine has therapeutic effects on methamphetamine self-administration. The researchers, NIDA 2004 Distinguished International Scientist Dr. Kazutaka Ikeda, Tokyo Institute of Psychiatry, Japan, and Dr. Athina Markou, The Scripps Research Institute, have received a 3-year grant from the U.S. - Japan Brain Research Cooperation Program as well as additional support from the Tokyo Institute of Psychiatry and the Japanese Society of Pharmacopoeia. Dr. Ikeda’s DISCA award supported his research exchange visit with Dr. Markou to learn research techniques and conduct experiments on intravenous self-administration of methamphetamine in mice. The preliminary results of their experiments suggest that fluoxetine significantly reduced methamphetamine self-administration, and led to their joint application to the U.S. - Japan Brain Research Cooperation Program. The U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) and the Japanese National Institute for Physiological Sciences organized the joint brain research program; the NIDA International Program has contributed support. In addition to the binational funding, The Tokyo Institute of Psychiatry granted Dr. Ikeda a 4 million yen budget to purchase equipment and the Japanese Society of Pharmacopoeia supported research exchange visits with Dr. Markou for two of Dr. Ikeda’s colleagues, Drs. Yukio Takamatsu and Shinya Kasai.