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Inflammation. 2010 Aug;33(4):224-34. doi: 10.1007/s10753-009-9176-5.

Different mechanisms in formation and prevention of indomethacin-induced gastric ulcers.

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Faculty of Medicine, Department of Pharmacology, Ataturk University, Erzurum, Turkey.


Indomethacin is an indol derivative, non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drug with anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antipyretic effects. Indomethacin became the first-choice drug to produce an experimental ulcer model as a result of having a higher ulcerogenic potential than other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). There have been several conflicting reports about the ulcerogenic mechanism of indomethacin; the mechanism is still unclear. It has been suggested that indomethacin induces gastric damage via inhibiting the release of protective factors like cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1), prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), bicarbonate, and mucus; increasing aggressive factors like acid; and increasing oxidant parameters while decreasing antioxidant parameters. Classic antiulcer drugs are known to produce antiulcer effects by activating against indomethacin (increasing PGE2, mucus, and bicarbonate production; inhibiting acid secretion; decreasing oxidant parameters; and increasing antioxidants). However, some antiulcer drugs have been shown to inhibit indomethacin-induced ulcers without affecting acid and mucus secretion or oxidant parameters, as well as to inhibit the production of protective factors like COX-1, PGE2, and bicarbonate, and to reduce antioxidant parameters. In order to resolve the contradictions in the abovementioned data, this review hypothesized a relationship between indomethacin-induced ulcers and alpha 2 adrenergic receptors. It is suggested that blockage of alpha 2 adrenergic receptors may be responsible for the increase in the aggressive factors induced by indomethacin, and stimulation of alpha 2 adrenergic receptors may be responsible for the increase of protective factors induced by antiulcer drugs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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