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Pronunciation: row-wul'fe-a, raw-, rah-

Definition: A genus of tropical trees and shrubs (family Apocynaceae). The powdered whole root of Rauwolfia serpentina contains alkaloids that produce a sedative-antihypertensive-bradycardiac action; approximately 50% of the total activity is due to reserpine.

[L. Rauwolf, German botanist, 16th century]

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© Copyright 2018 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.