How can drug discovery for psychiatric disorders be improved?

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Psychiatric disorders such as depression, anxiety and schizophrenia are leading causes of disability worldwide, and have a huge societal impact. However, despite the clear need for better therapies, and major advances in the understanding of the molecular basis of these disorders in recent years, efforts to discover and develop new drugs for neuropsychiatric disorders, particularly those that might revolutionize disease treatment, have been relatively unsuccessful. A multidisciplinary approach will be crucial in addressing this problem, and in the first Advances in Neuroscience for Medical Innovation symposium, experts in multiple areas of neuroscience considered key questions in the field, in particular those related to the importance of neuronal plasticity. The discussions were used as a basis to propose steps that can be taken to improve the effectiveness of drug discovery for psychiatric disorders.

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Nature Reviews – Drug Discovery, v. 6, p. 189-201