Opioids and the gut: Pharmacology and current clinical experience

H. U. De Schepper, F. Cremonini, M. I. Park, M. Camilleri

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

159 Scopus citations


This article reviews the pharmacology and physiology of opiate receptors and the current and potential uses of opioid agonists and antagonists in clinical gastroenterology. μ-receptors are involved in motor and sensory functions, and their modulation is established for treatment of diarrhea. μ-antagonists have potential to reverse endogenous (e.g., post-operative ileus) or iatrogenic dysmotility (e.g., opioid bowel dysfunction). Modulation of the function of κ-receptors may be a novel approach to control visceral pain in functional gut disorders. Results of formal testing of novel opioid modulators are keenly awaited.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)383-394
Number of pages12
JournalNeurogastroenterology and Motility
Issue number4
StatePublished - Sep 2004


  • Absorption
  • Mobility
  • Opiate
  • Opioid
  • Receptor
  • Sensation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
  • Gastroenterology


Dive into the research topics of 'Opioids and the gut: Pharmacology and current clinical experience'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this