The US Food and Drug Administration has extended the use of Actavis’ atypical antipsychotic Saphris (asenapine) to include the treatment of children with bipolar 1 disorder.

Specifically, physicians can now prescribe the drug as monotherapy for the acute treatment of manic or mixed episodes associated with bipolar I disorder in patients aged 10-17 years old.

According to Actavis, Saphris is the only atypical antipsychotic treatment option with a sublingual, black cherry-flavoured formulation.

Around 1.2 million children and teens in the US meet the criteria for bipolar I disorder.