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Non-Opioid Treatment For Persistent Cough Enters Final-Stage Human Trials

December 20, 2010: 03:47 AM EST

U.K.-based drug development firm SEEK will soon begin the final stages of human trials of a new drug containing theobromine, a natural ingredient found in cocoa and chocolate, for the treatment of persistent cough, which afflicts an estimated 800 million people worldwide and has a significant impact on an individual’s employment and psychosocial conditions, as well as on healthcare costs. Opioid-based drugs, such as those containing codeine, are associated with serious safety issues linked to the ways they metabolize codeine into morphine. Human trials in Korea found that theobromine doesn’t exhibit the side effects of opioid-based drugs. Researchers found that theobromine inhibits the “firing” of the vagus nerve, which is characteristic of persistent cough. Other benefits of theobromine include its use as a vasodilator, diuretic, and can stimulate the heart. A Phase III trial should begin within six months, and a drug could be on sale in Europe within two years.

"Long-awaited ‘cocoa’ based drug for treatment of persistent cough in final development", SEEK, December 20, 2010, © SEEK
Vitality & Better Living
South Korea
United Kingdom
Press Release
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