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Implications of Melatonin Therapy in Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Systematic Review

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Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a highly prevalent chronic functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder associated with abdominal pain and change in bowel habits that its etiology is not known yet. In the recent years, melatonin has been proposed as a possible candidate. In the present work, all clinical or non-clinical data about effects of melatonin in GI tract and IBS obtained from literature without time limit up to August 2010 have been studied and reviewed.

Eight clinical trials were reviewed for the efficacy and disturbance of melatonin in IBS and other GI disorders. The results showed disturbances in endogenous melatonin concentration in IBS patients and significant benefits of exogenous melatonin in these patients by decreasing abdominal pain and improvement of overall IBS symptom scores. The results of seventeen non-clinical studies showed anxiolytic, anti-inflammatory, anti oxidative and motility regulatory effects of melatonin on GI tract.

In conclusion, melatonin can be a target of interest in IBS because of its potentials to regulate GI motility.

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Keywords: 5-hydroxytryptamine-3 (5-HT3) receptor antagonists; 5-methoxy-N-acetyl tryptamine; Aloe vera; Antioxidant Effect; Cholecystokinin; Effect on Prostaglandins; GI disorders; GI tract; Hydrochloric Acid; Irritable bowel syndrome; L-tryptophan; Melatonin Therapy; Mellisa officinalis; N-acetyltransferas; NF B; Nicotinic Receptors; Nitric Oxide; Parkinson's disease; Serotonin; anticholinergics; central nervous system; colorectal cancer; diabetes; entrochromaffin cells; esophageal lesions; gastric ulcers; hydroxyindole-O methyltransferase; hydroxyindole-O-methyl-transferase; indolamine; melatonin; peppermint oil; pharmaceutical management; phosphodiesterase inhibitors; proinflammatory cytokines; treatment; tricyclic antidepressants; tumor necrosis factor alpha; ulcerative colitis

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2010

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  • Current Pharmaceutical Design publishes timely in-depth reviews covering all aspects of current research in rational drug design. Each issue is devoted to a single major therapeutic area. A Guest Editor who is an acknowledged authority in a therapeutic field has solicits for each issue comprehensive and timely reviews from leading researchers in the pharmaceutical industry and academia.

    Each thematic issue of Current Pharmaceutical Design covers all subject areas of major importance to modern drug design, including: medicinal chemistry, pharmacology, drug targets and disease mechanism.
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