Conclusion

The opioid system, composed of a family of receptors and their endogenous peptide ligands, is quite important within the central nervous system. It has many functions, some of which are readily demonstrated. However, the complexity of the system is quite extensive and a full understanding is not available. Many questions remain, including the role of the many unexplored opioid peptides postulated to be generated within the brain. Furthermore, splicing appears to play a major role in generating multiple subtypes of the various opiate receptor families. Although our knowl edge of this system is growing, many unknowns remain.

See Also the Following Articles

CHEMICAL NEUROANATOMY • DOPAMINE • GABA • PAIN • PEPTIDES, HORMONES, AND THE BRAIN AND SPINAL CORD • PSYCHOACTIVE DRUGS • PSYCHONEUROENDOCRINOLOGY • RESPIRATION • STRESS: HORMONAL AND NEURAL ASPECTS

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