Asian Journal of Microbiology, Biotechnology & Environmental Sciences Paper

Vol 18, Issue 1, 2016; Page No.(263-270)

EMERGING ROLE OF THE DELTA OPIOID SIGNALLING PATHWAY IN TREATING NEUROLOGICAL DISORDERS A FOCUSED REVIEW

ERFATH THANJEEM B, AND DWAIPAYAN SEN

Abstract

Although opioids are widely used as pain killers, studies in the past decade have shown considerable evidences of their non-analgesic effects, especially for the delta opioids. Among the three distinct opioid receptors-mu, delta, and kappa, the delta opioid receptor signalling pathway has been shown to play significant role in neural protection, differentiation and psychiatric disorders thus demonstrating therapeutic potential to treat several neurodegenerative diseases as well as in improving negative emotional states. Recognizing the therapeutic value of the delta opioid signalling pathway, researchers have been actively trying to understand the underlying mechanisms of their neuroprotective and psychiatric action in various preclinical models. Although considerable progress has been made, however, there is still a long way to go in thoroughly understanding the working mechanism of delta opioid receptors. Thus, this mini review attempts to highlight the importance of studying the delta opioid signalling pathway which can have potential therapeutic application in treating several neurological disorders.

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