Serochron® (formerly Tryptochron®)
Depression, like other states of ill-health, belongs to the group of so-called affective (emotional) disorders. A distinction is made between several forms of the disease: those in which depression occurs alone, and those in which the subject switches between depressive and manic phases (states of intensive euphoria for no reason).
During life approximately every eighth person suffers from depression requiring treatment. The patients experience phases of sadness, a sensation of inner emptiness, hopelessness, loss of drive and interest, inhibition of thought, anxiety and various physical symptoms.
The causes of this disease are manifold and complex, being mainly based on genetic predisposition, psychological factors and neurophysiological changes. The latter are marked by changes in the neurotransmitter balance (neurotransmitters are messenger substances for the transfer of signals between the nerve cells). The patients commonly demonstrate a deficiency of neurotransmitters, particularly a deficiency of serotonin. Therefore, depression is treated with medications that raise the concentration of this substance. Regrettably, many of these substances are associated with a wide spectrum of side effects.
By means of enzymatic hydroxylation, 5-hydroxytryptophan (5 HTP®) is formed in the nerve cells from the essential amino acid L‑tryptophan (essential means the body cannot produce the substance on its own and the substance has to be ingested with food). 5-hydroxytryptophan is transformed into serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine – 5 HT) through another enzyme which is a decarboxylase. Particularly in the brain, the physiological levels thus achieved lead to a harmonious interplay of many other transmitters.
In addition to its effect as a neurotransmitter for the transfer of signals between nerve cells, serotonin influences the contraction of arteries in the cardiovascular system and thus supports the body’s own regulation of blood pressure. In the skeletal muscles serotonin dilates the vessels, enhances blood flow and thus ensures optimum blood supply to the muscles.
As described above, a serotonin deficiency may trigger depression and states of anxiety. Furthermore, serotonin influences the perception of pain, appetite, and also affects bowel peristalsis. As a result, the patients frequently experience the corresponding physical symptoms.
Diseases associated with a change in serotonin metabolism include migraine, vasomotoric headache, premenstrual syndrome and chronic inflammatory diseases such as fibromyalgia, which is a complex disease of unknown genesis marked by severe omnipresent muscle pain, fatigue, fever, insomnia, symptoms of an irritable colon and swollen lymph nodes.
Several medications such as anorectic agents and anti-cholesterolemic agents and also certain diets inhibit the formation of serotonin and may trigger symptoms of a serotonin deficiency.
A serotonin deficiency cannot be eliminated by the administration of serotonin itself because serotonin is unable to cross the blood-brain barrier and is degraded in the body before it can unfold its effect. Therefore, precursors of serotonin such as L‑tryptophan and 5 HTP® (5-hydroxytryptophan) are used. Both substances exist in food, but not in sufficient quantities to eliminate a serotonin deficiency arising from the above mentioned diseases. L‑tryptophan and 5 HTP® are able to cross the blood-brain barrier and are transformed into serotonin in the brain. 5 HTP® has been used successfully for several years now. However, therapeutically effective serum levels are achieved for a relatively short period of time. Therefore, the substance has to be taken several times a day in order to achieve the desired physiological effect. The administration of L‑tryptophan alone is also not an optimal solution. When taken in large quantities it is degraded in large amounts through the kynurenin degradation pathway (alternative metabolization in the liver) and not transformed into serotonin as desired.
Serochron® is a specially developed pharmaceutical form. It is a combination of L‑tryptophan, 5 HTP®, vitamins B3 and B6. This patented formulation, unique in terms of its mechanism of action, ensures an optimum supply of both substances from a chronobiological point of view. It is a biphasic preparation containing 5 HTP® in a fast-releasing form and L‑tryptophan in a slow-releasing (retarded) form. The fast-releasing 5 HTP® component causes a rapid increase in serotonin levels and activates the enzymatic transformation process leading to the formation of serotonin.
This causes a rapid onset of action on the one hand. On the other hand, giving an impetus to this transformation process causes the subsequent slow-releasing L‑tryptophan to be transformed into 5 HTP® and then into serotonin so that it is not degraded through the kynurenin degradation pathway. The initial effect of 5 HTP® in combination with the retarded L‑tryptophan component causes serotonin to be maintained at a physiologically effective level for up to 20 hours. Thus, the organism receives an optimal supply of serotonin. Vitamins B3 and B6 support the process of metabolization into serotonin, as they partially inhibit the kynurenin degradation pathway.
Depression: a placebo-controlled randomized study concerning the application of Serochron® in patients with mild to moderate depression demonstrated the excellent efficacy and good tolerability of the medication. It was found that Serochron® is more effective than 5 HTP® and much more effective than L‑tryptophan.
Migraine: attacks of migraine are, among other aspects, marked by a disturbance of the serotonin balance of the body. Serochron® can help to normalize this functional disorder.
Sleep disorders: particularly in younger patients with sleep disorders Serochron® facilitates the process of going to sleep because serotonin can be transformed into melatonin in these patients.
Appetite and weight loss: Serochron® has been shown to reduce appetite. Thus, it may lead to a positive weight management within a relatively short period of time. In contrast to conventional anorectic agents Serochron® is very well tolerated and safe.
Cardiovascular diseases: in addition to the fact that Serochron® resolves anxiety, it has a directly positive effect on the cardiovascular system as it protects the body from an excessive release of adrenalin.
Fibromyalgia: enhancing serotonin levels by the administration of Serochron® reduces many symptoms of fibromyalgia including pain, joint stiffness and sleep disorders.
in pharmaceutical grade. Other ingredients: dicalcium phosphate, microcrystalline cellulose, magnesium stearate, talc, SiO2
Depression: 1 tablet in the morning (if necessary 1 additional tablet at noon)
Migraine: 1 tablet in the morning and 1 tablet at noon
Fibromyalgia: 3 tablets distributed over the day
For general enhancement of wellbeing and a balanced mood, 1 tablet should be taken with plenty of fluid daily in the morning.
Very rarely and only after the intake of huge quantities, the patient may develop headache, bowel symptoms, insomnia and muscle pain. Once the use of the drug is discontinued or the dose reduced, these side effects disappear within a very short period of time.
Pregnant or lactating women or persons who are under constant medical care or take antidepressants should consult a doctor before use.
Caution is also advised in case of liver disease, as Serochron® may have an undesirably strong effect in this setting.
The substance should be taken with carbohydrate-rich food and a large quantity of fluid. Store in a cool, dry place and keep out of reach of children.