It is estimated that over 300 million people globally suffer from depression. Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) have been on the market since the late 1980s and still represent an invaluable pharmacological intervention in depression. However, 30-40% of patients do not respond to treatment - a subpopulation defined as Treatment Resistant Depression (TRD). The discovery that low doses of the anaesthetic and recreational drug ketamine has rapid and long-lasting antidepressant effects in TRD is opening a new era for drug discovery in depression.

Transpharmation has developed a platform of sensitive and highly consistent TRD preclinical assays responsive to ketamine. The chronic social defeat (CSD) mouse model has high construct, face and predictive validity and is sensitive to the effects of ketamine, providing a potential means to investigate the basic neuropathology underlying affective illnesses such as anxiety and TRD.

Our EEG platform has demonstrated robust differences in the sleep/wake profiles of Wistar Kyoto rats, (an endogenous model of depression) versus Sprague Dawley controls, which are also normalised by ketamine treatment. Furthermore, the cognitive symptoms of depression, including working memory deficits, can also be modelled using WKY rats, with ketamine again demonstrating efficacy. Our behavioural end points can be coupled with biomarker analysis to investigate the neurobiology of the disease and facilitate decision making.

Examples of the models we offer include:

pain1This list is not exhaustive, we are always developing new areas of discovery within our preclinical field of expertise. If there is something particular that is not listed here please do contact us.


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