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Expert Opin Emerg Drugs. 2006 May;11(2):293-313.

Emerging drugs for irritable bowel syndrome.

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Center for Neurovisceral Sciences & Women's Health, CURE: Digestive Diseases Research Center, UCLA Division of Digestive Diseases, GLA VA HC Bldg., 115/CURE, 11301 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, California 90073, USA.


Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is one of the most common chronic gastrointestinal disorders, yet its pathophysiology is incompletely understood and pharmacological treatments remain unsatisfactory. Current therapeutic choices include a range of drugs aimed at normalising bowel habits, reducing pain or treating comorbid psychological symptoms. However, this individual symptom-targeted approach remains unsatisfactory in terms of global symptom relief and patient satisfaction. In the last decade, further characterisation of IBS pathophysiology has provided new and exciting targets at different levels of the brain-gut axis for the development of several candidate drugs. Advances in clinical trial design will help to evaluate these compounds in different IBS patient populations.

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