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Cytoprotection is a process by which chemical compounds provide protection to cells against harmful agents.[1]

For example, a gastric cytoprotectant is any medication that combats ulcers not by reducing gastric acid but by increasing mucosal protection.[2] Examples of gastric cytoprotective agents include prostaglandins which protect the stomach mucosa against injury by increasing gastric mucus secretion. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) inhibit the synthesis of prostaglandins and thereby make the stomach more susceptible to injury.[3] Gastric cytoprotective drugs include carbenoxolone, deglycyrrhizinised liquorice, sucralfate (aluminium hydroxide and sulphated sucrose), misoprostol (a prostaglandin analogue) and bismuth chelate (tri-potassium di-citrato bismuthate).


  1. ^ "MeSH Heading: Cytoprotection". Medical Subject Headings. United States National Library of Medicine. 
  2. ^ Tulassay Z, Herszényi L (April 2010). "Gastric mucosal defense and cytoprotection". Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol. 24 (2): 99–108. doi:10.1016/j.bpg.2010.02.006. PMID 20227024. 
  3. ^ Wallace JL (September 1992). "Prostaglandins, NSAIDs, and cytoprotection". Gastroenterol. Clin. North Am. 21 (3): 631–41. PMID 1516961. 

This article incorporates text from the United States National Library of Medicine, which is in the public domain.