MAR 26 2013
MHLW JAPAN has approved Nippon Shinyaku Co’s Regtect (acamprosate) for support maintenance of abstinence in patients with alcohol dependence.
Acamprosate, also known as N-acetyl homotaurine and by the brand name Campral, is a drug used for treating alcohol dependence.
Acamprosate is thought to stabilize the chemical balance in the brain that would otherwise be disrupted by alcoholism, possibly by antagonizing glutamatergic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors and agonizing gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) type A receptors. Reports indicate that acamprosate only works with a combination of attending support groups and abstinence from alcohol.Certain serious side effects include diarrhea, allergic reactions, irregular heartbeats, and low or high blood pressure, while less serious side effects include headaches, insomnia, and impotence. Acamprosate should not be taken by people with kidney problems or allergies to the drug.
Campral is manufactured and marketed in the United States by Forest Laboratories, while Merck KGaA markets it outside the US. It is sold as 333 mg white and odorless tablets of acamprosate calcium, which is the equivalent of 300 mg of acamprosate.