scopolamine(redirected from Columbian Devil's Breath)
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scopolamine(skōpŏl`əmēn, –mĭn) or
hyoscine(hī`əsēn', –sĭn), alkaloid drug obtained from plants of the nightshade family (Solanaceae), chiefly from henbanehenbane
or black henbane,
herb (Hyoscyamus niger) native to the Mediterranean region and naturalized in parts of North America. It belongs to the family Solanaceae (nightshade family) and contains a narcotic poison (similar to that of the related belladonna)
..... Click the link for more information. , Hyoscyamus niger. Structurally similar to the nerve substance acetylcholineacetylcholine
, a small organic molecule liberated at nerve endings as a neurotransmitter. It is particularly important in the stimulation of muscle tissue. The transmission of an impulse to the end of the nerve causes it to release neurotransmitter molecules onto the surface of
..... Click the link for more information. , scopolamine acts by interfering with the transmission of nerve impulses by acetylcholine in the parasympathetic nervous systemnervous system,
network of specialized tissue that controls actions and reactions of the body and its adjustment to the environment. Virtually all members of the animal kingdom have at least a rudimentary nervous system.
..... Click the link for more information. and produces symptoms typical of parasympathetic system depression: dilated pupils, rapid heartbeat, and dry skin, mouth, and respiratory passages. Because scopolamine depresses the central nervous system, it is used as a sedativesedative,
any of a variety of drugs that relieve anxiety. Most sedatives act as mild depressants of the nervous system, lessening general nervous activity or reducing the irritability or activity of a specific organ.
..... Click the link for more information. prior to anesthesia and as an antispasmodic in certain disorders characterized by restlessness and agitation, e.g., delirium tremens, psychosis, mania, and Parkinsonism. When combined with morphinemorphine,
principal derivative of opium, which is the juice in the unripe seed pods of the opium poppy, Papaver somniferum. It was first isolated from opium in 1803 by the German pharmacist F. W. A. Sertürner, who named it after Morpheus, the god of dreams.
..... Click the link for more information. , the effect produced is a tranquilized state known as twilight sleep; this combination of drugs was formerly used in obstetrics but is now considered too dangerous. Overdosage of scopolamine causes delirium, delusions, paralysis, and stupor. The alkaloid is found in a variety of nonprescription sedatives.
an alkaloid of the tropane group commonly occurring in such solanaceous plants as belladonna, henbane, and datura (mainly in the leaves). The alkaloid is also present in the rhizome of Scopolia. Scopolamine is similar to atropine in chemical properties and physiological activity. Its hydrobro-mide is used in anesthesiology; it is also an antiparkinson and cholinolytic agent. A derivative of scopolamine and camphor is included in the composition of aeron, an antiemetic.