Small Molecule Pharmaceuticals
Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) were first discovered in the early 1950s, and brought to market later that decade. Their chemical structure contains three rings of atoms. Tetracyclic antidepressants, which contain four rings of atoms, are a closely related group of antidepressant compounds. Cyclic antidepressants were among the first antidepressants developed. While often replaced by newer drugs that cause fewer side effects, they are still a good option for many people. Cyclic antidepressants work by making more neurotransmitters such as serotonin and norepinephrine available to the brain. This helps brain cells communicate better, which in turn affects mood. Tertiary amine TCAs, such as doxepin and amitriptyline, are more potent inhibitors of serotonin reuptake than secondary amine TCAs, such as nortriptyline and desipramine.
Publication number: 5991-6512EN
Publication Date: December 7, 2015