A deuterated drug is a small molecule medicinal product in which one or more of the hydrogen atoms contained in the drug molecule have been replaced by deuterium. Because of the kinetic isotope effect, deuterium-containing drugs may have significantly lower rates of metabolism, and hence a longer half-life.
SD-809 is a deuterated version of tetrabenazine. The non deuterated version of tetrabenazine is an approved drug for the involuntary movements in Huntington’s disease, however it short half-life limits its clinical efficacy. SD-809 has a longer half-life than the parent drug and has completed clinical trials. However the FDA has so far not approved the drug because the sponsor has not as yet provided data on the blood levels of tetrabenazine metabolites.
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