caffeine

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caffeine

(kăfēn`), odorless, slightly bitter alkaloid found in coffeecoffee,
a tree, its seeds, and the beverage made from them. The coffee tree, a small evergreen of the genus Coffea, has smooth, ovate leaves and clusters of fragrant white flowers that mature into deep red fruits about 1-2 in. (1.27 cm) long.
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, teatea,
tree or bush, its leaves, and the beverage made from these leaves. The plant (Camellia sinensis, Thea sinensis, or C. thea) is an evergreen related to the camellia and indigenous to Assam (India) and probably to parts of China and Japan.
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, kola nuts (see colacola
or kola,
tropical tree (genus Cola) of the family Sterculiaceae (sterculia family), native to Africa but now grown in other tropical regions. The fruit is a pod containing seeds from which is obtained caffeine, an alkaloid that functions as a stimulant.
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), ilex plants (the source of the Latin American drink matématé
, yerba maté
, or Paraguay tea,
evergreen tree (Ilex paraguariensis) of the family Aquifoliaceae (holly family). From ancient times Native Americans and now millions of Argentines and others in South America have made a tea (also
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), and, in small amounts, in cocoa (see cacaocacao
, tropical tree (Theobroma cacao) of the family Sterculiaceae (sterculia family), native to South America, where it was first domesticated and was highly prized by the Aztecs. It has been extensively cultivated in the Old World since the Spanish conquest.
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). It can also be prepared synthetically from uric aciduric acid
, white, odorless, tasteless crystalline substance formed as a result of purine degradation in man, other primates, dalmatians, birds, snakes, and lizards. The last three groups of animals also channel all amino acid degradation into the formation of glycine, aspartic
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. While relatively harmless, it is the most commonly used mind-altering drug in the world. When used in moderation, caffeine acts as a mild stimulantstimulant,
any substance that causes an increase in activity in various parts of the nervous system or directly increases muscle activity. Cerebral, or psychic, stimulants act on the central nervous system and provide a temporary sense of alertness and well-being as well as
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 to the nervous system, blocking the neurotransmitter adenosine and resulting in a feeling of well-being and alertness. It increases the heart rate, blood pressure, and urination and stimulates secretion of stomach acids; excessive intake can result in restlessness, insomnia, and heart irregularities. The effects of caffeine vary from person to person, as people excrete it at different rates. Physical dependence and unpleasant symptoms upon withdrawal (headache, fatigue, depression) are common in regular caffeine users.

Bibliography

See B. A Weinberg and B. K. Bealer, The World of Caffeine (2001).

Caffeine

 

a central nervous system stimulant; trimethylxanthine, an alkaloid found in tea leaves, coffee beans, and kola nuts and obtainable synthetically.

Caffeine is administered in tablet form in cases of central nervous system depression, weak cardiac activity, narcotic intoxication, hypotonia, and migraine. A solution of caffeine and sodium benzoate, containing 38 percent pure caffeine and administered subcutaneously, has similar pharmacological properties and indications.

caffeine

[′kaf‚ēn]
(organic chemistry)
C8H10O2N4·H2O An alkaloid found in a large number of plants, such as tea, coffee, cola, and mate.

caffeine

, caffein
a white crystalline bitter alkaloid responsible for the stimulant action of tea, coffee, and cocoa: a constituent of many tonics and analgesics. Formula: C8H10N4O2
References in periodicals archive ?
Five or more of those symptoms after drinking coffee could lead to a diagnosis of caffeine intoxication, and caffeine intoxication might lead to distress or impairment, according to LiveScience, which also reports the latest edition adds caffeine withdrawal - otherwise known as the headache, fatigue, depression and the inability to concentrate, for those of us who know what it is like to be under-caffeinated.
CAFFEINE SIDE EFFECTS Symptoms of caffeine intoxication include irritability.
Caffeine intoxication can cause nausea, headache, anxiety, heart palpitations, elevated blood pressure and other symptoms, but the amount that triggers such reactions depends on the person.
The caffeine content of energy drinks varies over a tenfold range, with some containing the equivalent of 12 cans of Coca-Cola, yet the caffeine amounts are often unlabeled and few include warnings about the potential health risks of caffeine intoxication," said Roland Griffiths, PhD, an author of an article published online Sept.