Is Trintellix the same as Brintellix?
Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on Feb 8, 2021.
- Trintellix and Brintellix are brand names for the antidepressant drug vortioxetine, but only the brand name Trintellix is now commercially available.
- When vortioxetine was originally marketed, it was called Brintellix. Over time, there was confusion between the name "Brintellix" (vortioxetine), an antidepressant, and "Brilinta" (ticagrelor), an anti-platelet drug (a type of blood-thinner).
- Due to the potential for errors resulting from name confusion, the FDA changed the brand name for vortioxetine from Brintellix to Trintellix in June 2016.
Patients will see the new name "Trintellix" on their prescription bottles, but formulation, uses, dosage forms and strengths of Trintellix remain the same as Brintellix. It comes as 5 mg, 10, and 20 mg oral tablets and is given once a day.
Related: View pill images for Trintellix here
What type of drug is Trintellix?
Trintellix (vortioxetine) is an oral prescription antidepressant medicine that is used to treat major depressive disorder (depression) in adults. It has also been shown to have anti-anxiety properties but is not specifically approved for that use.
Trintellix is classified as a serotonin modulator.
- It is thought that Trintellix works by altering the effect of various serotonin (5-HT) subtypes in the brain.
- Serotonin is a neurotransmitter, a type of chemical in the body that helps to transmit messages between nerve cells. Serotonin affects every part of the body. It helps to stabilize mood, sleep habits, sexual desire, memory and feelings of hunger.
- It is thought low levels of serotonin in the central nervous system may lead to depression.
Trintellix has been shown to increase serotonin activity in the brain by slowing its reuptake (reabsorption). It also has activities at other serotonin sites, including blocking the 5-HT3 receptor and activating the 5-HT1A receptor. It is not known how these activities contribute to the overall antidepressant effect of Trintellix.
Trintellix does not appear to have effects at different neurotransmitters such as dopamine or norepinephrine receptors.
Which drugs are similar to Trintellix?
Other antidepressants that modulate serotonin and that are similar to Trintellix (vortioxetine) include:
Antidepressants are a large category of medications that are composed of many different classes of drugs. The serotonin modulators differ from other antidepressants such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), atypical antidepressants, tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs), and monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs).
Trintellix, when used for depression, may be an option to SSRIs and SNRIs for use as an antidepressant. But each of these drugs or drug classes have different doses, side effects, drug interactions and warnings. They are not interchangeable unless specifically prescribed for you by your healthcare provider.
If you have concerns about the effectiveness of your medicine, contact your doctor. Do not stop taking Trintellix without the advice of your doctor.
This is not all the information you need to know about Trintellix (vortioxetine) for safe and effective use. Review the full Trintellix information here, and discuss this information and any questions you have with your doctor or other health care provider.
- Tritschler L, Felice D, Colle R, et al. Vortioxetine for the treatment of major depressive disorder. Expert Rev Clin Pharmacol. 2014 Nov;7(6):731-45. doi: 10.1586/17512433.2014.950655. Epub 2014 Aug 28. PMID: 25166025.
- Trintellix (vortioxetone) [product information]. Takeda Pharmaceuticals America. Lexington, MA. Revised Jan. 2021. Accessed Feb. 2021 at https://general.takedapharm.com/TRINTELLIXPI
- Hirsch M, et al. Serotonin modulators: Pharmacology, administration, and side effects. Up to Date. Accessed Feb. 8, 2021 at https://www.uptodate.com/contents/serotonin-modulators-pharmacology-administration-and-side-effects
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