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A summary of important health news from the past week.

FDA approves higher dose naloxone hydrochloride nasal spray product to combat opioid overdose

By: Emily Henderson

The FDA announced the approval of a higher dose of the naloxone nasal spray product, Hikma Pharmaceuticals’ Kloxxado, on April 30. The announcement revealed that it approved Hikma Pharmaceuticals to increase the dosage of Kloxxado from 2mg and 4 mg to 8 mg. Naloxone is an opioid reversal drug, and can become effective within minutes following a suspected overdose. The drug has proven to be effective nationwide, and has helped prevent opioid overdose deaths. A higher dosage provides additional treatment options during a suspected overdose, and could potentially have a greater chance of preventing opioid overdose deaths.

A Psychedelic Drug Passes Big Test for PTSD Treatment

By: Rachel Nuwer

MMDA, the illegal drug known as Ecstasy or Molly, was shown to help those suffering from severe post-traumatic stress disorder. A study conducted found that those who received MDMA during therapy experienced a reduction in the severity of their PTSD symptoms compared to those who did not receive the treatment. Two months after receiving the MDMA treatment, more than half of the participants no longer qualified for a diagnosis of PTSD. Although researchers have seen a lot of promising results, MDMA-assisted therapy cannot be approved for therapeutic use until the Food and Drug Administration conducts further research. Mental health experts and researchers highlight that this research could lead to further studies on MDMA’s ability to treat other mental health conditions like eating disorders, depression, and obsessive compulsive disorder.

First-ever US release of genetically modified mosquitoes begins in Florida Keys

By: Sandee LaMotte

Twelve blue and white boxes containing eggs of genetically modified mosquitoes have been placed around the Florida Keys. When these eggs hatch, it is hoped these mosquitoes–all of whom are male, which don’t bite humans–will mate with local mosquitoes and prevent additional mosquitoes from being born. Mosquitoes are being targeted due to the high number of diseases they are able to transmit. There is opposition, however, from locals who are angry at the “mutant mosquitoes” but those in favor are hopeful the GMO bugs will reduce the need to use pesticides in their communities.