Pharmaceutisch Weekblad

, Volume 14, Issue 4, pp 206–220 | Cite as

Dealing with sadness, madness and hostility

New psychotropic drug remedies for the future
  • Anton J. M. Loonen
Drugs in the Pipeline


The objective of this article is to present an overview of new forms of psychotropic drug therapy that may be expected to play a role in psychiatric practice in the 1990s. In predicting these future developments, three lines of approach have been followed. Firstly, progress in elucidating basic neuronal mechanisms is described. The radioligand receptor binding technique has proved to be an especially powerful tool in the search for novel psychoactive compounds. Secondly, those mental health problems most likely to undergo intensive study are discussed. It is likely that special attention will be devoted to organic mental disorders related to aging (dementia) or chronic exposure to toxic substances. In addition, research will be aimed at explaining and reducing the occurrence of auto-aggressive and hetero-aggressive behaviour. Thirdly, the types of newly designed agents and treatment strategies currently under investigation are outlined. In particular, the development of pharmacological agents that interfere with serotonergic molecular mechanisms has opened the way to improving existing psychotropic drugs, to inventing drugs that achieve known clinical effects via different mechanisms of action, and even to discovering entirely new categories of psychotropic drugs.


Antidepressive agents Drug design Mental disorders Neurosciences Psychotropic drugs Serenics Tranquilizing agents 


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Copyright information

© Royal Dutch Association for Advancement of Pharmacy 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anton J. M. Loonen
    • 1
  1. 1.Central Hospital Pharmacy 1ME 's-Hertogenboschthe Netherlands

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