Relaxation: molecular and physiological significance

Med Sci Monit. 2006 Sep;12(9):HY21-31.


There appears to be a molecular process for relaxation. Given this, we attempt to demonstrate this phenomenon based on established molecular and physiological processes in light of our current understanding of central and peripheral nervous system mechanisms. Central to our hypothesis is the significance of norepinephrine, nitric oxide, dopamine and morphine signaling both in the central and peripheral nervous system. We find that nitric oxide and morphine control catecholamine processes on many levels, including synthesis, release and actions. We conclude that enough scientific information exists to support these phenotmena as actual physical processes that can be harnessed to provide better patient care.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Central Nervous System / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Intelligence
  • Peripheral Nervous System / metabolism*
  • Relaxation / psychology*
  • Signal Transduction
  • Stress, Physiological / metabolism