Wood creosote, the principal ingredient in Seirogan, has a long history as a known gastrointestinal microbicidal agent. When administered orally, the intraluminal concentration of wood creosote is not sufficiently high to achieve this microbicidal effect. Through further animal tests, we have shown that antimotility and antisecretory actions are the principal antidiarrheal effects of wood creosote. Wood creosote inhibits intestinal secretion induced by enterotoxins by blocking the Cl- channel on the intestinal epithelium. Wood creosote also decreases intestinal motility accelerated by mechanical, chemical, or electrical stimulus by the inhibition of the Ca2+ influx into the smooth muscle cells. In this overview, the antimotility and antisecretory effects of wood creosote are compared with those of loperamide. Wood creosote was observed to inhibit stimulated colonic motility, but not normal jejunal motility. Loperamide inhibits normal jejunal motility, but not stimulated colonic motility. Both wood creosote and loperamide inhibit intestinal secretion accelerated by acetylcholine. Wood creosote was found to have greater antisecretory effects in the colon than loperamide. Based upon these findings, we conclude that the antidiarrheal effects of wood creosote are due to both antisecretory activity in the intestine and antimotility in the colon, but not due to the microbicidal activity as previously thought. Wood creosote was found to have no effects on normal intestinal activity. These conclusions are supported by the results of a recent clinical study comparing wood creosote and loperamide, which concluded that wood creosote was more efficacious in relieving abdominal pain and comparable to loperamide in relieving diarrhea.
2005 by the PHARMACEUTICAL SOCIETY OF JAPAN