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April 14, 2021

Moving Beyond Medications That Act at the μ Receptor in the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder

Author Affiliations
  • 1Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 2Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
  • 3Harvard Medical School, McLean Hospital, Belmont, Massachusetts
JAMA Psychiatry. 2021;78(7):701-702. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2021.0259

The opioid crisis continues unabated during the COVID-19 pandemic. There is a need to explore novel treatments for opioid use disorder (OUD), given the devastation of more than 46 000 annual opioid-related overdose deaths1 and the medical and social toll of OUD. Life-saving pharmacotherapies for OUD are available (methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone) but are underused. Moreover, their effectiveness, while clear, leaves substantial room for improvement.

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