Ramelteon is a drug used to promote sleep. It is an agonist of melatonin receptors in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus. By inducing sleep, ramelteon is useful as a hypnotic for the treatment of insomnia. There’s a few nonspecific side effects of ramelteon, including dizziness, nausea, fatigue, and headaches. Finally, ramelteon does not cause dependence so it's generally safer to use compared to other sleep-promoting drugs like the benzodiazepines!

Key Points

  • Ramelteon
    • Mechanism
      • Melatonin receptor agonist (hence the mel in the name)
        • Binds MT1 and MT2 in suprachiasmatic nucleus
    • Clinical Use
      • Treats Insomnia
    • Adverse effects
      • Dizziness
      • Nausea
      • Fatigue
      • Headache
      • No dependence (not a controlled substance)