Abuse liability assessments: Drug discrimination
The drug discrimination study assesses a drug’s potential to induce interoceptive stimuli (sensations) that are similar to those produced by a known drug of abuse. Such studies are conducted to assess similaries, in terms of psychic and physical perceptions, of a novel test agent with a known drug of abuse.
Drugs within the same pharmacological class share comparable interoceptive stimuli and are known to substitute for each other in the drug discrimination test. Thus, if the test drug has a novel mechanism of action, an alternative approach may be preferable for identifying an appropriate training drug. The test forms a part of the regulatory required abuse liability assessment for central nervous system active drugs.