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PPD Awarded Study To Help Develop PTSD Drugs

By Christina Haley O'Neal, posted Feb 22, 2021

PPD Inc. (Nasdaq: PPD) has been awarded Defense Health Agency funds to support PTSD drug development, according to a news release.

The global contract research organization has received a Research Project Award (RPA) "to develop and execute an adaptive platform clinical research trial of drug interventions to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)," stated the release.

Officials said that there are only two drugs approved by the FDA to treat PTSD. Those drugs were developed nearly two decades ago.

PTSD, a mental health condition that affects about 8 million American adults during a given year, is developed by some people who experience a life-threatening event, such as military combat.

"The number of veterans suffering from PTSD varies by service era, but up to 30% of war veterans have had PTSD in their lifetimes," stated the release.

PPD will work with federal groups to test the effectiveness and safety of at least two drug candidates for the treatment of PTSD in U.S. military active duty personnel and veterans, stated the release.

“PTSD is a major unmet medical need, particularly for the men and women who serve in the U.S. military,” Stephen Peroutka, vice president and global therapeutic area head of neuroscience for PPD, said in the release. “Our adaptive platform trial will offer an innovative, cost-effective and much-needed approach to PTSD drug development, with an end goal of delivering efficacious drugs to treat this major unmet medical need."

Peroutka is also former chief of neurology at the Palo Alto VA Medical Center.

"The PPD neuroscience clinical and medical experts who will be responsible for the studies are former VA attending psychiatrists and physicians who have treated PTSD in active-duty service members and veterans," stated the release.

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