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Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2002 Apr;71(4):555-68.

The medical benefit of 5-HT research.

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  • 1Psychiatry Research Department, GlaxoSmithKline, New Frontiers Science Park, Third Avenue, Harlow, CM19 5AW, Essex, UK.


5-HT research is now more than 50 years old, and it has generated a wealth of therapeutic agents, some of which have had a major impact on disease management. The 5-HT reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are among the most widely prescribed drugs for treating depression and a variety of other disorders including anxiety, social phobia and premenstrual dysphoria (PMD). The other major success stories of 5-HT research are the discovery of 5-HT1B/D receptor agonists for treating migraine and 5-HT3 receptor antagonists for chemotherapy and radiation-induced emesis. The role of 5-HT in the mechanism of action of antipsychotic agents remains a topic of intense research, which promises better treatments for schizophrenia in the future. Compounds interacting with 5-HT1F, 5-HT2C, 5-HT6 and 5-HT7 receptors are currently under investigation and may prove to have important therapeutic applications in the future.

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