Peptides (see PEPTIDE) produced in the brain which have a pain-relieving action; hence their alternative name of opiate peptides. Their name is derived from endogenous MORPHINE. They have been deﬁned as endogenous opiates or any naturally occurring substances in the brain with pharmacological actions resembling opiate alkaloids such as morphine. There is some evidence that the pain-relieving action of ACUPUNCTURE may be due to the release of these opiate peptides. It has also been suggested that they may have an antipsychotic action and therefore be of value in the treatment of major psychotic illnesses such as SCHIZOPHRENIA.
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