|Science & Tech Spotlight: Opioid Vaccines
More than 10 million people in the United States abused opioids such as heroin and fentanyl in 2017, and there were over 47,000 opioid-related overdose deaths. One treatment under development is an opioid vaccine, which could block the drugs from entering the central nervous system. It essentially immunizes patients from drug-induced euphoria, as well as addiction and overdose. Advantages of a vaccine over current treatments include a minimal need for medical supervision and no potential for abuse.