Serotonin is a complex biological substance that functions as a neurotransmitter and a hormone.
The production of serotonin occurs in the epiphysis tissue and in the digestive tract. The greatest concentration of the substance is found in the brain, platelets, and intestines. If there is a shortage of the drug, Zoloft and other serotonin-based medications that are available in pharmacies are prescribed.
The hormone is produced from the amino acid precursor tryptophan. To convert tryptophan into a hormone chemically, vitamins, selenium, and other trace elements are needed.
The serotonin test in the blood is performed only if there is a suspicion of a malignant tumor of the gastrointestinal tract. The source of excessive secretion can be carcinoma and its metastases.
Functions of serotonin as a neurotransmitter are associated with the work of the brain. In the central nervous system, this substance optimizes the interaction of individual neurons.
Under the influence of high concentrations of serotonin, a person feels a spiritual uplift, euphoria, and joy.
The serotonin level also has to do with disability. The concentration of attention, memory and other intellectual processes are supported by the neurotransmitter.
Serotonin also affects the natural anesthetic (opioid) system. A high level of hormone eliminates physical discomfort. Low values of neurotransmitter concentration, on the contrary, contribute to a constant sense of heaviness, fatigue, and pain.
The neurotransmitter plays a role in the reproductive system. If much of this substance is produced, then the libido rises. Serotonin also participates in the formation of effective labor, supports the allocation of breast milk.
It is known that the neurotransmitter is responsible for the processes of thermoregulation.
Functions of serotonin as a hormone are realized outside the central nervous system. The substance accumulates in platelets and the intestinal wall. In the same place, this hormone carries out its main action.
Synthesis of serotonin in the digestive tract:
- increases the production of enzymes
- improves peristalsis.
The hormone promotes digestion of food. Dysbacteriosis reduces the level of the produced neurotransmitter in the intestine. Gastroenterologist help detect symptoms of impaired microflora.
In the circulatory system, serotonin has mainly a hemostatic effect. This means that the hormone prevents excessive bleeding from trauma.
This function is performed by:
- spasm of small vessels (capillaries)
- activation of the production of coagulation factors of blood
- formation of a dense clot from platelets.
The effectiveness of serotonin against bleeding is so high that this ability is the one mainly used by pharmacists. A solution of synthetic hormone is administered in the case of traumatic shock, symptoms of blood loss and other severe pathologies.