/res"euhr pin, -peen', reuh serr"pin, -peen/, n. Pharm.
an alkaloid, C33H40N2O9, obtained from the root of the rauwolfia, Rauwolfia serpentina, used in the treatment of hypertension.
[1950-55; < G Reserpin, equiv. to reserp- (prob. irreg. < NL Rauwolfia serpentina (Rauwolfia RAUWOLFIA + LL serpentina, fem. of serpentinus SERPENTINE)) + G -in -INE2]

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      drug derived from the roots of certain species of the tropical plant Rauwolfia (Rauvolfia). The powdered whole root of the Indian shrub Rauwolfia serpentina historically had been used to treat snakebites, insomnia, hypertension (high blood pressure), and insanity. Reserpine, isolated in 1952, was the first of many Rauwolfia alkaloids found in the crude drug. Because the drug produces a profound and prolonged tranquilizing action, it was once used in treating schizophrenia. Reserpine is sometimes used in treating hypertension, though newer antihypertensive drugs with fewer central nervous system side effects are the preferred treatment.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • reserpine — [ri sʉr′pin, ri sʉr′pēn; res′ər pēn΄] n. [Ger reserpin, prob. arbitrary contr. < ModL Rauwolfia serpentina + Ger in, INE3] a crystalline alkaloid, C33H40N2O9, extracted from the root of various rauwolfias (esp. Rauwolfia serpentina), used in… …   English World dictionary

  • reserpine — noun Etymology: German Reserpin, probably irregular from New Latin Rauwolfia serpentina, a species of rauwolfia Date: 1952 an alkaloid C33H40N2O9 extracted especially from the root of rauwolfias and used as a tranquilizer especially in psychotic… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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  • reserpine — noun An alkaloid, isolated from the snakeroot plant, that is used as an antipsychotic and antihypertensive drug …   Wiktionary

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  • reserpine — rɪ sÉœrpɪn , pɪːn / resÉ™p n. medication used to treat high blood pressure and anxiety (Medicine) …   English contemporary dictionary

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