GRANT: Claus Juul Løland receives funding for treating cocaine addiction – University of Copenhagen

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12 August 2015

GRANT: Claus Juul Løland receives funding for treating cocaine addiction

Congratulations

Danish researcher and Center for Synthetic Biology associate Claus Juul Løland from the department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology has been granted 2,6 million DKK for a project investigating drugs binding to the dopamine transporter

Direct Assessment of Translocation Dynamics and Drug Binding Conformations in the Dopamine Transporter

Project description:
Cocaine abuse is a growing problem throughout the Western world. Cocaine acts by blocking the function of a protein in the brain: The dopamine transporter (DAT). DAT is essential for the regulation of communication between nerve cells usually activated by what we call rewarding stimuli (sex, good food, smells, etc.). By blocking DAT communication will be intensified and we will get the feeling of well-being (reward) without the presence of an impression. Therefore, cocaine is the most addictive substance known to man. There are no known substances that can be used in the treatment of addictions. We now have a new class of drugs, which also binds to DAT but without the rewarding effects as cocaine. We want to clarify the molecular function of DAT and explore the different mechanisms that underlie the binding of cocaine and these new substances to DAT. This will take place with some of the most sophisticated and sensitive biophysical methods are available today, which, among other things, measuring the change of just a single atom in the protein and movements of less than 0.1 nanometers (0.0000000001 m). With these results we can hopefully get closer to an understanding of the effects of cocaine.

Link to Claus Juul Løland profile page ...>

Danske forskere jagter kur mod kokain
News story here in Danish ...>