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Psychopharmacology in fragile X syndrome--present and future.

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Department of Pediatrics, Neurology, and Biochemistry, RUSH-University Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois 60612, USA.


In addition to cognitive disability, fragile X syndrome (FXS) is associated with behavioral problems that are often functionally limiting. There are few controlled trials to guide treatment; however, available information does suggest that medications can be quite helpful for a number of categories of behavioral disturbance in FXS. Specifically, stimulants appear to be quite useful for management of distractibility, hyperactivity, and impulsive behavior; antidepressants help with anxiety, obsessive-compulsive behaviors and mood dysregulation; and antipsychotics can reduce aggression. These medications are supportive and help minimize dysfunctional behaviors and maximize functioning. As more is learned about the neural functions of FMRP, medications in the future will be expected to target specific synaptic mechanisms dysregulated in FXS brain and thus ameliorate the cognitive deficit with resultant behavioral improvements. This article summarizes knowledge about effectiveness and approaches to management of currently available psychopharmacology for behavior in FXS and discusses early leads to future treatments for cognition.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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