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The goal of the proposed study is to evaluate the comparative efficacy of N-acetyl cysteine to placebo in pathologic skin picking. Thirty subjects with pathologic skin picking will receive 12 weeks of double-blind treatment with N-acetyl cysteine or matching placebo. The hypothesis to be tested is that N-acetyl cysteine will be more effective than placebo in patients with pathologic skin picking. The proposed study will provide needed data on the treatment of an often disabling disorder that currently lacks a clearly effective treatment.
Pathologic skin picking involves repetitive, ritualistic, or impulsive picking of otherwise normal skin leading to tissue damage, personal distress, and impaired functioning. Although skin picking has been described in the medical literature for over one-hundred years, it remains a poorly understood psychiatric issue and often goes undiagnosed and untreated.
Picking behavior does not by itself suggest a psychiatric disorder. Pathology exists in the focus, duration and extent of the behavior, as well as the reasons for picking, associated emotions, and resulting problems. Patients with PSP report thoughts of picking or impulses to pick that are irresistible, intrusive and/or senseless. These thoughts, impulses, or behaviors also cause marked distress for patients and significantly interfere with other activities. Unlike normal picking behavior, the pathologic form of skin picking is recurrent and usually results in noticeable skin damage.
Thirty subjects with pathologic skin picking will receive 12 weeks of double-blind treatment with N-acetyl cysteine or matching placebo. The hypothesis to be tested is that N-acetyl cysteine will be more effective than placebo in patients with pathologic skin picking. The proposed study will provide needed data on the treatment of an often disabling disorder that currently lacks a clearly effective treatment.
Allocation: Randomized, Control: Placebo Control, Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment, Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Investigator, Outcomes Assessor), Primary Purpose: Treatment
Pathologic Skin Picking
N-Acetyl Cysteine, Placebo
University of Minnesota
Not yet recruiting
University of Minnesota - Clinical and Translational Science Institute
Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-07-24T14:10:04-0400
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An enzyme that catalyzes the biosynthesis of cysteine in microorganisms and plants from O-acetyl-L-serine and hydrogen sulfide. This enzyme was formerly listed as EC 220.127.116.11.
A zinc-binding domain defined by the sequence Cysteine-X2-Cysteine-X(9-39)-Cysteine-X(l-3)-His-X(2-3)-Cysteine-X2-Cysteine -X(4-48)-Cysteine-X2-Cysteine, where X is any amino acid. The RING finger motif binds two atoms of zinc, with each zinc atom ligated tetrahedrally by either four cysteines or three cysteines and a histidine. The motif also forms into a unitary structure with a central cross-brace region and is found in many proteins that are involved in protein-protein interactions. The acronym RING stands for Really Interesting New Gene.
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