Cocaine vaccine to cure addiction undergoes clinical trials

Clinical trials on a cocaine vaccine are currently being conducted by researchers at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas.

The vaccine which stimulates the body's immune system to attack cocaine when the prohibited drug is taken in will hopefully provide a cure for people addicted to the substance.

At the forefront of the scientific breakthrough are Dr. Tom Kosten, a psychiatry professor and his wife Therese a psychologist and neuroscientist.

The couple sought the approval of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in December for a multi-institutional trial for the cocaine vaccine by spring.

This, if successful will pave the way for the vaccine's final approval.

Dr. Kosten says most users at some point, give in to temptation and relapse, but those for whom the vaccine is effective will not get high and will then lose interest.

To date there have been more than 50 medical solutions proposed to cure cocaine addiction, but most have failed and the most effective current treatment consists of a combination of psychiatric counseling and a 12-step program; there are an estimated 2 million cocaine users in the U.S.

A similar vaccine developed in 2004 in Britain by pharmaceutical company Xenova, TA-CD, was also found to not stop the craving for cocaine it took away the kick from the drug; the trial showed those who were given TA-CD cocaine vaccine were able to stay away from the prohibited substance for six months.

Dr. Tom Kosten is also working on vaccines for methamphetamine, heroin and nicotine and the National Institute of Drug Abuse, which funded much of the research says anti-drug vaccines may provide an important weapon against addiction.


  1. Ron Nash Ron Nash United States says:

    I would like for my son Michael to participate in the trials for the cocaine vaccine. He is only 16 and has been using cocaine since he  was 14.  He has been in 4 twelve step rehab programs and I have no illusion that they will ever be effective.  I believe that a medical solution is the only workable solution.  Please let me know how to enrole my son in the clinical trials.

  2. Robert P Robert P United States says:

    My partner has a serious cocaine addiction and it is destroying our relationship and everything good in our lives. I really don't know where to turn and I heard about the vaccination and hope was restored. He is going into a 28 day inpatient program that he has not been able to stay in longer than a week. I think he is going to stay this time because he realizes that it is destroying his life and the people around him are hurting as well. I live on Long Island and I am desperately trying to get my partner into a clinical trial for the cocaine vaccination. If anyone has any information please contact me as soon as possible.  I appreciate any efforts and help you can give us. Thank you RWP

  3. ken ken United States says:

    I live out in new york. I have been doing cocaine 4 about 20 yrs. I went to a rehab about 4 yrs ago and stayed sober 4 about six months. I went back to using and am looking 4 a way out . If you guys are taking people in 4 clinical trials I would love to be part of it. I am a healthy 42 ys old and need to staighten out my life

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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