Enkephalins play a great role in management of pain, blood pressure, hypertension and cardiovascular diseases. Enkephalins are short-lived molecules being rapidly hydrolyzed following their synaptic release by enkephalin degrading enzymes. The inhibitors of enkephalin degrading enzymes are able to prolong the duration of action of enkephalins. This review will focus on the inhibitors of enkephalin degrading enzymes as a novel therapeutic approach for cancer itself and also in cancer and neuropathic pain management with discussion on the present status and future directions for a new class of drugs.
Keywords: Enkephalins, dipeptidylpeptidase-III, aminopeptidase N, neutral endopeptidase, angiotensin converting enzyme, puromycin sensitive enzyme, carboxypeptidase A6 and pain, hypertension, enkephalin degrading enzymes, stress
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