The Corticotropin Releasing Factor Receptor 1 in Alcohol Use Disorder: Still a Valid Drug Target?

Pomrenze MB, Fetterly TL, Winder DG, Messing RO
Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2017 41 (12): 1986-1999

PMID: 28940382 · PMCID: PMC5711524 · DOI:10.1111/acer.13507

Corticotropin releasing factor (CRF) is a neuropeptide that plays a key role in behavioral and physiological responses to stress. A large body of animal literature implicates CRF acting at type 1 CRF receptors (CRFR1) in consumption by alcohol-dependent subjects, stress-induced reinstatement of alcohol seeking, and possibly binge alcohol consumption. These studies have encouraged recent pilot studies of CRFR1 antagonists in humans with alcohol use disorder (AUD). It was a great disappointment to many in the field that these studies failed to show an effect of these compounds on stress-induced alcohol craving. Here, we examine these studies to explore potential limitations and discuss preclinical and human literature to ask whether CRFR1 is still a valid drug target to pursue for the treatment of AUD.

Copyright © 2017 by the Research Society on Alcoholism.

MeSH Terms (5)

Alcoholism Animals Humans Molecular Targeted Therapy Receptors, Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone

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