Constipation is a multifactorial disorder that can cause significant psychological distress to patients and economic burden on the health care system. Many patients are not satisfied with their current established treatment, highlighting the need for new and improved therapeutic options. Guanylate cyclase-C (GC-C)/cyclic guanosine monophosphate agonists have emerged as a safe and efficacious class of drugs for the treatment of chronic idiopathic constipation (CIC). Plecanatide, a second-in-class, US FDA-approved, synthetic GC-C agonist, has recently been approved in the US for the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome with constipation at doses of 3 and 6 mg and CIC at the 3 mg dosage. In this study, we summarize the design of this novel 16-amino acid uroguanylin analog, drug development through Phase I, II, and III clinical studies, and its role in the treatment of CIC.
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