UH Researcher Joins Team Developing Opioid Vaccine
Individuals addicted to opioids wage a daily war within over whether or not to use a drug whose side effect can be death. If those same individuals, however, had the choice to take an opioid vaccine once or twice a year, their internal struggle could be over.
With a $25 million grant from the National Institutes of Health Helping to End Addiction Long-term Initiative (HEAL), vaccine scientists from the Precision Vaccines Program at Boston Children’s Hospital have partnered with Therese Kosten, University of Houston professor of psychology, and her colleagues Greg Cuny, associate professor of medicinal chemistry in the UH College of Pharmacy, and Colin Haile, research associate professor of psychology, to develop an adjuvant opioid use disorder vaccine. An adjuvant molecule boosts the immune system’s response to vaccines, a critical component for the effectiveness of anti-addiction vaccines.