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Innovation Observatory > Reports > Drugs > Pentetrazol for Idiopathic Hypersomnia and Narcolepsy Type 2

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Pentetrazol for Idiopathic Hypersomnia and Narcolepsy Type 2

Drugs

Neurology and Neurosurgery

February 2018


Hypersomnia means excessive sleepiness and sleeping, when the person struggles to stay awake during the day and has great difficulty being awakened from sleep. When there is no clear cause, this condition is called idiopathic hypersomnia (IH). Narcolepsy is a rare long-term brain disorder that causes a person to suddenly fall asleep at inappropriate times. Sometimes narcolepsy is associated with temporary loss of muscle control that causes weakness and possible collapse (cataplexy). This type of narcolepsy is called Type 1 narcolepsy. When narcolepsy is not associated with cataplexy is called type 2 narcolepsy. Narcolepsy and IH are very similar conditions.
Pentetrazol is a medicinal product that is being developed for the treatment of IH and narcolepsy type 2. Pentetrazol is administered orally and it acts by blocking the effect of a chemical substance called Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA). GABA is thought to play a role in promoting sleeping and is believed to be elevated in people with IH. If licensed, Pentetrazol will offer a new treatment option for patients with IH or narcolepsy type 2.

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