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Drug Names(s): Zelmac, tegaserod maleate
Description: Zelnorm (Tegaserod) is a 5-HT4 receptor partial agonist that binds with high affinity at human 5-HT4 receptors, whereas it has no appreciable affinity for 5-HT3 or dopamine receptors. It has moderate affinity for 5-HT1 receptors. Tegaserod, by acting as an agonist at neuronal 5-HT4 receptors, triggers the release of further neurotransmitters such as calcitonin gene-related peptide from sensory neurons. The activation of 5-HT4 receptors in the gastrointestinal tract stimulates the peristaltic reflex and intestinal secretion, as well as inhibits visceral sensitivity. In vivo studies showed that tegaserod enhanced basal motor activity and normalized impaired motility throughout the gastrointestinal tract. In addition, studies demonstrated that tegaserod moderated visceral sensitivity during colorectal distension in animals.
Serotonin has been shown to be involved in regulating motility, visceral sensitivity and intestinal secretion. Investigations suggest an important role of serotonin Type-4 (5-HT4) receptors in the maintenance of gastrointestinal functions in humans.
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