Afobazole is an anxiolyticdrug launched in Russia in the early 2000s. It produces anxiolytic and neuroprotective effects without any sedative or muscle relaxant actions, making it more selective in action than many currently used drugs for this application. Its mechanism of action remains poorly defined however, with GABAergic, NGF and BDNF release promoting, MT1 receptor antagonism, MT3 receptor antagonism, and sigma agonism suggested as potential mechanisms. Afobazole was shown to inhibit MAO-A reversibly and there might be also some involvement with serotonin receptors. Clinical trials have shown afobazole to be well tolerated and reasonably effective for the treatment of anxiety, although it has not been introduced into widespread clinical use outside of Russia. The compound has not been evaluated by the FDA. It is unscheduled in the US and legal to import by private citizens for personal use.
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