Treating addiction with shrub

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Using cryo-electron microscopy, OHSU researchers reveal the three major shapes of the serotonin transporter--a protein in the brain linked to anxiety and depression. In this image, a serotonin transporter bound with ibogaine (lime spheres), is found to have outward-open, closed and inward-open shapes. PIX/Oregon Health & Science University

SCIENTISTS used a compound found in a shrub native to Africa to reveal the three major shapes of the serotonin transporter, a protein in the brain linked to anxiety and depression. The discovery opens new avenues for developing medications to treat addiction.