NASA research zeroes in on new cure for queasy

October 15, 2012

Potential passengers grounded by motion sickness may soon have a more effective medication to treat that queasy feeling. NASA has adapted a tried-and-true cure for delivery via nasal spray, a method that brings more rapid relief.

The space agency announced Oct. 12 a deal with Epiomed Therapeutics Inc., a California firm that aims to bring intranasal scopolamine (INSCOP, as NASA calls it) to the wider world.

"NASA and Epiomed will work closely together on further development of INSCOP to optimize therapeutic efficiency for both acute and chronic treatment of motion sickness which can be used by NASA, the Department of Defense and world travelers on land, in the air and on the seas," said Lakshmi Putcha, developer of the innovative treatment strategy at Johnson Space Center.

A nasal delivery produced promising results during tests at the Naval Aerospace Medical Research Laboratory in Pensacola, Fla., and the U.S. Navy is also working on an agreement to collaborate with Epiomed.

Clinical trials must still be conducted to secure approval from the Food and Drug Administration.