Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs) are a class of drugs that interact with estrogen receptors in the body.
They have the ability to selectively modulate the activity of estrogen receptors in different tissues, acting as agonists or antagonists depending on the specific tissue.
SERMs work by binding to estrogen receptors and influencing their function.
In tissues such as the breast and bone, SERMs act as estrogen receptor agonists, mimicking the effects of estrogen and promoting beneficial effects.
They can help prevent bone loss and reduce the risk of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
In tissues such as the uterus and breast cancer cells, SERMs act as estrogen receptor antagonists, blocking the effects of estrogen.
This can be beneficial in the treatment of hormone receptor-positive breast cancer, as blocking estrogen receptor activity can inhibit the growth of cancer cells.
One well-known example of a SERM is tamoxifen.
It is commonly used in the treatment of hormone receptor-positive breast cancer and can help reduce the risk of breast cancer recurrence.
Tamoxifen acts as an antagonist in breast tissue, blocking the effects of estrogen, but it acts as an agonist in other tissues, such as bone.
Another example of a SERM is raloxifene, which is primarily used to prevent and treat osteoporosis in postmenopausal women.
Raloxifene acts as an agonist in bone tissue, promoting bone density, while acting as an antagonist in breast and uterine tissue, reducing the risk of breast cancer and endometrial hyperplasia.
Common side effects may include hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and increased risk of blood clots.
Selective estrogen receptor modulators play a valuable role in various conditions related to estrogen receptors, including breast cancer and osteoporosis.
Their selective actions allow for targeted treatment and prevention in specific tissues while minimizing unwanted side effects.
Include tamoxifen (Nolvadex), and toremifine (Fareston).