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Definition of Endorphin

Endorphin: A hormonal compound that is made by the body in response to pain or extreme physical exertion. Endorphins are similar in structure and effect to opiate drugs. They are responsible for the so-called runner's high, and release of these essential compounds permits humans to endure childbirth, accidents, and strenuous everyday activities.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=10812
Last Editorial Review: 3/19/2012

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