Which medications in the drug class Glutamate receptor blockers are used in the treatment of Alcoholism?

Updated: Nov 27, 2018
  • Author: Warren Thompson, MD, FACP; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Glutamate receptor blockers

Mechanism of action is unknown, but it enhances GABA transmission and inhibits glutamate transmission. Compared with placebo, reduces drinking frequency and effectively increases abstinence in patients with alcoholism.

Acamprosate (Campral)

Synthetic compound with a chemical structure similar to that of the endogenous amino acid homotaurine (structural analogue of GABA). Mechanism of action to maintain alcohol abstinence not completely understood. Hypothesized to interact with glutamate and GABA neurotransmitters centrally to restore neuronal excitation and inhibition balance. Not associated with tolerance or dependence development. Use does not eliminate or diminish alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Indicated to maintain alcohol abstinence as part of a comprehensive management program that includes psychosocial support. Available as a 333-mg tab.

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