Publication date: Mar 17, 2020
Opioids can decrease breathing and co-administration of benzodiazepines with opioids can further decrease breathing. It is unknown whether certain other drugs also decrease breathing when co-administered with opioids. The objective of this study is to determine whether certain drugs combined with an opioid decrease breathing compared to breathing with an opioid alone. In order to assess this, this study will utilize the Read Rebreathing method, where study participants breathe increased levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide. The increased levels of carbon dioxide cause the study participants to increase breathing. This increased breathing response can be decreased by opioids and benzodiazepines, and potentially other drugs. Using this procedure, low doses of opioids or benzodiazepines can be administered that have minimal-to-no effects on breathing when study participants are going about normal activities breathing room air, however breathing increases less than expected as carbon dioxide levels are increased. This study includes three parts: A Lead-In Reproducibility Phase and two main parts (Part 1 and Part 2). The Lead-In Reproducibility Phase will measure the variability between study participants and between repeated uses of the method in the same study participant within a day and between days. Part 1 will study an opioid alone, benzodiazepine alone, and their combination to show the methodology will detect changes in breathing at low doses of the drugs that are known to affect breathing. Part 2 will assess whether two drugs, selected due to their effects on breathing in a nonclinical model, decrease the breathing response when combined with an opioid compared to when an opioid is administered alone.
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