Alosetron, n 5-HT3 receptor antagonist, delays colonic transit in patients with irritable bowel syndrome and healthy volunteers

L. A. Houghton, J. M. Foster, P. J. Whorwell

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Abstract

Background: Alosetron is a potent and selective 5-HT3 receptor antagonist, which has been shown to be beneficial in the treatment of female patients with non-constipated irritable bowel syndrome. Aims: To investigate the effect of alosetron on whole gut, small bowel and colonic transit in patients with irritable bowel syndrome (Study 1) and healthy volunteers (Study 2). Subjects: Thirteen patients with irritable bowel syndrome and 12 healthy volunteers. Methods: Both studies were randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled with a two-way crossover design, in which each subject received alosetron (2 mg b.d. administered orally) or placebo for 8 days. Mean whole gut transit was determined from the excretion of radio-opaque markers; small bowel transit was determined from rise in breath hydrogen after a meal; and colonic transit and segmental transit were evaluated from abdominal X-ray. In addition, colonic transit was calculated by subtracting small bowel transit time from whole gut transit time. Results: Alosetron increased colonic transit time by prolonging left colonic transit in both patients with irritable bowel syndrome and controls. This resulted in a tendency for the whole gut transit to be delayed in irritable bowel syndrome patients (P = 0.128), which was confirmed in controls (r = 0.047). Conclusion: Alosetron delays colonic transit by prolonging left colonic transit. These results add to the body of evidence suggesting that alosetron should have a therapeutic role in patients with non-constipated irritable bowel syndrome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)775-782
Number of pages8
JournalAlimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Volume14
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 26 2000

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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