Crohn's Disease Forum » Treatment » Melatonin...an anti-inflammatory?


02-01-2014, 08:22 PM   #1
Kero
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Melatonin...an anti-inflammatory?

Not sure if this has been posted yet, but a friend of mine sent me the link to an article about the anti inflammatory effects of Melatonin. Anyone else hear of this? This was the excerpt from the article on the GI tract:

Gastrointestinal Tract Protection

The human gastrointestinal tract is the site of some of the most profound oxidative stresses our bodies experience, which may be why it produces more than 500 times as much melatonin as the pineal gland.59 The stomach takes the brunt of the damage because of its constant exposure to strong acid and/or powerful digestive enzymes, both of which generate “storms” of free radicals.

Melatonin not only reduces stomach injury caused by NSAIDs such as piroxicam or indomethacin by as much as 90% compared with controls, but also dramatically reduces measures of tissue oxidation with no significant adverse effects.60,61 European researchers have also shown that melatonin protects against damage to both the stomach and the pancreas and accelerates healing of chronic gastric ulcers by stimulating blood flow.5,10

Further research from Europe has revealed that melatonin reduces symptoms in patients with another painful condition called “functional dyspepsia,” or “sour stomach.”62 In a placebo-controlled trial, gastroenterologists treated 60 patients (aged 19-39 years) with functional dyspepsia with either melatonin 5 mg or placebo, once every evening for 12 weeks. Of the melatonin-treated group, 57% showed complete resolution of symptoms and 30% had partial improvement, but 93% of placebo recipients reported no change at all.
Cancer Prevention and Control

Melatonin has also been studied in alleviating gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD, also known as “heartburn”), a potentially dangerous condition that can lead to esophageal cancer. In a head-to-head comparison, the researchers gave 175 patients standard treatment with the prescription drug omeprazole (Prilosec®), while 176 received a supplement containing melatonin, its precursor L-tryptophan, and B vitamins, over a 40-day treatment period. All patients in the supplement group reported complete regression of symptoms by the end of the study, compared with only 66% in the drug-treated group. Again, no significant side effects were reported in the supplemented patients.63

It is believed that melatonin protects against GERD by increasing blood flow and anti-inflammatory molecules in the esophageal mucous, thus preventing significant esophageal injury.
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