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strychnine

Pronunciation: strik'nin, -nen

Definition: An alkaloid from Strychnos nux-vomica; colorless crystals of intensely bitter taste, nearly insoluble in water. It stimulates all parts of the CNS, and was used as a stomachic, an antidote for depressant poisons, and in the treatment of myocarditis. Strychnine blocks the inhibitory neurotransmitter glycine, and thus can cause convulsions. The formerly used salts of strychnine are strychnine hydrochloride, strychnine phosphate, and strychnine sulfate. It is a potent chemical capable of producing acute or chronic poisoning of humans or animals.

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

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