Tokyo: Popular drug Prozac (fluoxetine), prescribed in depression and panic attacks, may also spur production of new brain cells in the grey matter, say researchers.
The researchers based at the Institute for Comprehensive Medical Science, Fujita Health University, Aichi, Japan, named these brain cells as "Layer 1 Inhibitory Neuron Progenitor cells" (L1-INP).
These cells could potentially pave the way for the treatement of neuro-degenerative diseases and psychiatric disorders, the journal Neuropsychopharmacology reports.
Until now it was not known whether L1-INP-related neurogenesis (production of such brain cells) could be induced in the normal adult cortex (grey matter).
Tsuyoshi Miyakawa, Koji Ohira, and their colleagues employed fluoxetine, one of the most widely used anti-depressants, to stimulate the production of new neurons from L1-INP cells, according to Fujita statement.