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An opioid is a chemical that works by binding to opioid receptors, which are found principally in the central nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract. The receptors in these two organ systems mediate both the beneficial effects and the side effects of opioids.
Nektar receives $40 million cash payment from first commercial sale of MOVENTIG (naloxegol)

Nektar receives $40 million cash payment from first commercial sale of MOVENTIG (naloxegol)

Nektar Therapeutics announced today that it has received a $40 million cash payment under a license agreement with AstraZeneca. The payment was triggered by the first commercial sale of MOVENTIG (naloxegol) in Germany. [More]
Egalet to present scientific data on SPRIX Nasal Spray at Painweek 2015

Egalet to present scientific data on SPRIX Nasal Spray at Painweek 2015

Egalet Corporation, a fully integrated specialty pharmaceutical company focused on discovering, developing, and commercializing innovative pain treatments, today announced that researchers will be presenting scientific data on SPRIX (ketorolac tromethamine) Nasal Spray, Egalet-001, an abuse-deterrent, extended-release, oral morphine product candidate, and Egalet-002, an abuse-deterrent, extended-release, oral oxycodone product in development, at PainWeek 2015 to be held September 8 to 12 in Las Vegas, Nevada. [More]

Education can empower clinicians to safely prescribe opioids for chronic pain sufferers

Educating clinicians on how to safely prescribe opioids can help decrease opioid misuse among chronic pain sufferers. [More]
Variations in opioid receptor genes linked to neonatal abstinence syndrome severity in newborn babies

Variations in opioid receptor genes linked to neonatal abstinence syndrome severity in newborn babies

A new study led by researchers at Boston Medical Center indicates that variations in opioid receptor genes are associated with more severe neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) in newborn babies. The findings, published online in Drug & Alcohol Dependence, could help lead to the development of individualized treatment plans tailored to each infants' risk of requiring medication to curb their NAS symptoms, which could help improve these patients' outcomes and reduce how long some stay in the hospital. [More]
AMA Task Force to Reduce Opioid Abuse announces national recommendations to address opioid crisis

AMA Task Force to Reduce Opioid Abuse announces national recommendations to address opioid crisis

Opioid abuse is a serious public health problem that has reached crisis levels across the United States, with 44 people dying each day from overdose of opioids, and many more becoming addicted. Recognizing the urgency and serious impact of this issue on the health of hundreds of thousands of patients across the country, today the American Medical Association Task Force to Reduce Opioid Abuse announced the first of several national recommendations to address this growing epidemic. [More]
Researchers evaluate use of pharmacy-based naloxone education and distribution to fight opioid overdoses

Researchers evaluate use of pharmacy-based naloxone education and distribution to fight opioid overdoses

In response to the growing opioid crisis, several states, including Massachusetts and Rhode Island, have granted pharmacists the authority to provide naloxone rescue kits without a prescription to at-risk patients. This model of pharmacy-based naloxone (PBN) education and distribution is one of the public health strategies currently being evaluated at hundreds of pharmacies in both states to determine the impact on opioid overdose death rates. [More]
Three medical oncologists to receive ESMO's acclaimed awards

Three medical oncologists to receive ESMO's acclaimed awards

The European Society for Medical Oncology, the leading European professional organisation for advancing medical oncology, announced today the three exceptional medical oncologists who will receive its acclaimed awards. [More]
Opioids produced by yeast; revealing the potential for cheaper pain relief

Opioids produced by yeast; revealing the potential for cheaper pain relief

Researchers at Stanford University have genetically engineered yeast so it produces hydrocodone, a semi-synthetic opioid analgesic used in the United States for relief of moderate to severe pain. [More]
BDSI announces FDA approval of sNDA for new formulation of ONSOLIS (fentanyl buccal soluble film) CII

BDSI announces FDA approval of sNDA for new formulation of ONSOLIS (fentanyl buccal soluble film) CII

BioDelivery Sciences International, Inc. announced the approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration of a Supplemental New Drug Application (sNDA) for a new formulation of ONSOLIS (fentanyl buccal soluble film) CII for the management of breakthrough pain in patients with cancer who are opioid tolerant. [More]
Older patients more likely to be readmitted to hospital after ambulatory surgery

Older patients more likely to be readmitted to hospital after ambulatory surgery

Patients 65 and older who have ambulatory surgery are much more likely to be readmitted to the hospital within 30 days than younger patients, regardless of their health before surgery, reports a new, large national Northwestern Medicine study. The likely cause, based on previous research, is difficulty understanding medication dosing and discharge instructions, as well as cognitive impairment among older patients. [More]
BMC partners with RIH, CVS to support pharmacy-based naloxone rescue kits to help combat opioid addiction, overdose

BMC partners with RIH, CVS to support pharmacy-based naloxone rescue kits to help combat opioid addiction, overdose

Boston Medical Center has received a $1.3 million grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to support a demonstration project of pharmacy-based naloxone rescue kits to help reduce opioid addiction and overdose death in two New England States: Massachusetts and Rhode Island. [More]
Nonmedical use of prescription opioids increasing among young adults

Nonmedical use of prescription opioids increasing among young adults

The nonmedical use of prescription opioids (POs) has become an area of increasing public health concern in the United States and rates of use are particularly high among young adults. In the past decade, an emerging "epidemic" of nonmedical PO use has been reported. [More]
Better pain relief options for individuals with chronic back and leg pain

Better pain relief options for individuals with chronic back and leg pain

Chronic back and leg pain sufferers in search of better pain relief options may have a new choice. According to a study published in the Online First edition of Anesthesiology, the official medical journal of the American Society of Anesthesiologists, patients who received a novel high frequency form of spinal cord stimulation (SCS) therapy experienced significantly greater, long-term relief for both chronic back and leg pain, when compared to a traditional low frequency form of SCS therapy. [More]
Opioid prescribing guidelines that focus high-dose use may need revision, say researchers

Opioid prescribing guidelines that focus high-dose use may need revision, say researchers

Overdoses of opioid pain medications frequently occur in people who aren't chronic users with high prescribed opioid doses--the groups targeted by current opioid prescribing guidelines, reports a study in the August issue of Medical Care. [More]
SLU researcher awarded NIH's Cutting-Edge Basic Research Award to solve pain-killer problem

SLU researcher awarded NIH's Cutting-Edge Basic Research Award to solve pain-killer problem

SLU pain researcher Daniela Salvemini has been awarded the NIH's Cutting-Edge Basic Research Award (CEBRA) to solve an alarming problem: pain killers that are capable of quelling terrible pain also carry debilitating side effects and significant risk of addiction. [More]

National Safety Council requests employers to develop workplace policies around use of opioid painkillers

The National Safety Council is calling on employers to develop workplace policies around the use of opioid prescription painkillers after reviewing research and court cases showing the negative impacts of these medicines on employee safety and worker's compensation costs. [More]
Research findings may help health care providers curb painkiller misuse

Research findings may help health care providers curb painkiller misuse

People who misuse prescription pain relievers all have one thing in common, University of Georgia researchers have discovered: a history of recent illicit drug use. How they acquire such drugs varies according to age, however. [More]
Internet-based program can help people manage their chronic pain, reduce reliance on opioids

Internet-based program can help people manage their chronic pain, reduce reliance on opioids

Washington State University researchers have found that people can manage chronic pain and reduce their reliance on opioids through an Internet-based program that teaches non-medical alternatives like increased physical activity, thinking more positively and dealing with emotions. [More]
Results from Phase 3 study evaluating safety and efficacy of Zalviso published in Anesthesiology

Results from Phase 3 study evaluating safety and efficacy of Zalviso published in Anesthesiology

AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative therapies for the treatment of acute and breakthrough pain, today announced that results from the IAP311 study have been published in Anesthesiology. [More]

Using multiple pharmacies to fill prescriptions associated with opioid overdoses

A study conducted in the state of Washington and reported in The Journal of Pain showed that almost half of deaths attributed to prescription opioids were Medicaid recipients, and using multiple pharmacies to fill prescriptions is linked with opioid overdoses. [More]
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