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First Big Depression Advance Since Prozac Nears FDA Approval

  • Advisers to the FDA vote in favor of J&J’s drug esketamine
  • Fast-acting treatment is close cousin of ‘k hole’ party drug
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Bloomberg Intelligence’s Sam Fazeli reports as the FDA moved closer to approval of the Johnson & Johnson drug.Source: Bloomberg
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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is on the brink of approving a breakthrough drug that could upend the way severe depression is treated.

Johnson & Johnson’s esketamine, a close chemical cousin of the anesthetic ketamine, cleared a major hurdle on Tuesday when a panel of outside experts recommended that the FDA approve the treatment. The fast-acting antidepressant, administered via a nasal spray, is being tested in major depressive disorder and suicidal thinking. If approved, it would be the first major therapeutic advance for depression since the introduction of Prozac in 1987.