Brand name: Contrave
Generic Name: naltrexone HCl and bupropion HCl) extended-release tablets
Medication Class: naltrexone is an opioid antagonist and bupropion is an aminoketone antidepressant
Similar Drugs: Other prescription medications indicated for obesity include Qsymia (a combination of topiramate and phentermine) and Belviq (lorcaserin)
Manufacturer: Orexigen Therapeutics Incorporated and Takeda Pharmaceuticals America Incorporated
FDA Approval Date: September 10, 2014
What is Contrave and its mechanism of action?
Contrave is a combination of two FDA-approved medications, naltrexone, and bupropion. Naltrexone is an opioid antagonist approved for treatment of opioid and alcohol abuse. Prescription opioid medications include Percocet, Dilaudid, Oxycontin, Vicodin, and Norco. These medications are controlled substances because they have a high risk of abuse and dependence. Naltrexone works by blocking receptors these medications bind to in the body. When these receptors are blocked by naltrexone, opioids and alcohol are unable to bind to the receptor and produce their effects, reducing the effect of opioids and alcohol.
Bupropion is approved for treatment of depression and smoking cessation. It stops chemicals in the brain called dopamine and norepinephrine from being taken up by neurons, keeping them active in the brain.
Contrave is a fixed-dose combination of naltrexone and bupropion. How this combination works to cause weight loss is not known. Scientists think that Contrave may work on areas of the brain that control appetite and the reward system (the part of the brain that remembers a rewarding experience in order to repeat it).
What is Contrave approved for treating?
Contrave is approved as an adjunctive treatment along with proper diet and exercise for patients with a BMI (body mass index) of 30 kg/m2 (obese) or greater, or with a BMI of 27 kg/m2 or greater and the presence of an additional weight-related condition (for example, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes).
Next: Efficacy, Facts, Side Effects