Scientists are developing a vaccine that fades cocaine's psychotropic effects and can potentially favor in quitting its use.
Researchers said they used a new approach, which harnesses a bacterial protein, 'flagellin' to trigger an immune system attack on cocaine if it enters the body.
Researchers said that this response could dull cocaine's psychotropic effects.
Vaccines can be designed to recruit the body's immune system to recognise non-microbial substances such as drugs, are normally associated with fighting bacterial or viral infections, they can also be researchers said.
Researchers took a safe bacterial protein called flagellin that has already been incorporated in other vaccines and modified it to boost the immune response to cocaine.
They tested the compound in mice and found that it worked better than a vaccine candidate they had developed previously. The strategy opens up a new avenue for designing vaccines against drugs of abuse.