A Shreveport-based pharmaceutical company said a preclinical study shows the company’s anti-smoking drug, a combination of metyrapone and oxazepam, helped smokers cut back more than either drug did by itself.

Embera NeuroTherapeutics Inc. said results from its combo-drug, called EMB-001 for now, were similar to varenicline, an anti-smoking drug that has already won approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Embera’s study was published online Thursday in Psychopharmacology, a medical journal.

“The data continue to suggest the potential efficacy of EMB-001 in treating stress-related addiction disorders, such as nicotine and cocaine dependence, and support further study of EMB-001 in our Phase 1 clinical trial, planned for 2013,” Chief Executive Officer Bob Linke said in a news release. “In a pilot clinical study published online in the January 2012 issue of the Journal of Psychopharmacology, the Embera team showed that EMB-001 was well tolerated and reduced cocaine usage and craving in cocaine-dependent subjects. This finding supports the further clinical testing of EMB-001 in cocaine dependence and other clinical indications, such as nicotine dependence.”