strychnic, adj.
/strik"nin, -neen, -nuyn/, n.
1. Pharm. a colorless, crystalline poison, C21H22N2O2, obtained chiefly by extraction from the seeds of nux vomica, formerly used as a central nervous system stimulant.
2. an Indian tree, Strychnos nux-vomica, of the logania family, having small, yellowish-white flowers in clusters, berrylike fruit, and seeds that yield strychnine.
Also, strychnia /strik"nee euh/, strychnina /strik"ni neuh/.
[1810-20; < F, equiv. to NL Strychn(os) genus name ( < Gk strýchnos a kind of nightshade) + F -ine -INE2]

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Organic compound, a poisonous alkaloid obtained from seeds of the nux vomica tree of India and related plants of the genus Strychnos.

It does not dissolve in water nor well in alcohol, and it has an intense bitter taste. It has been used in rodent poisons. Within 20 minutes after ingestion, it causes painful muscle contractions and convulsions, pulling the head back and arching the back; death usually results from respiratory muscle spasms. It is used in small doses by veterinarians as a stimulant.

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      a poisonous alkaloid that is obtained from seeds of the nux vomica tree (S. nux-vomica) and related plants of the genus Strychnos. It was discovered by the French chemists Joseph-Bienaimé Caventou and Pierre-Joseph Pelletier (Pelletier, Pierre-Joseph) in 1818 in Saint-Ignatius'-beans (S. ignatii), a woody vine of the Philippines. The nux vomica tree of India is the chief commercial source. Strychnine has a molecular formula of C21H22N2O2. It is practically insoluble in water and is soluble only with difficulty in alcohol and other common organic solvents. It has an exceptionally bitter taste.

      Strychnine has been used in rodent poisons and in smaller doses as a stimulant in veterinary practice. It increases the reflex irritability of the spinal cord, which results in a loss of normal inhibition of the body's motor cells, causing severe contractions of the muscles; arching of the back is a common symptom of poisoning. Strychnine rapidly enters the blood, whether taken orally or by injection, and symptoms of poisoning usually appear within 20 minutes. The symptoms begin with cramps and soon culminate in powerful and agonizing convulsions that subside after a minute but recur at a touch, a noise, or some other minor stimulus. Death is usually due to asphyxiation resulting from continuous spasms of the respiratory muscles.

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Universalium. 2010.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • STRYCHNINE — Alcaloïde de formule brute C21H2222, extrait de la graine du vomiquier (Strychnos nux vomica ) ou noix vomique, de la famille des loganiacées. Très toxique, la strychnine est inscrite au tableau A de la pharmacopée. On trouve le vomiquier à… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Strychnine — Strych nine, n. [L. strychnos a kind of nightshade, Gr. ?: cf. F. strychnine.] (Chem.) A very poisonous alkaloid resembling brucine, obtained from various species of plants, especially from species of {Loganiace[ae]}, as from the seeds of the St …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • strychnine — powerful poisonous alkaloid, 1819, from Fr. strychnine, from Mod.L. Strychnos, the genus name of the plant (nux vomica) from which the poison is obtained, from Gk. strychnon, a kind of nightshade, of uncertain origin. The chemical was discovered… …   Etymology dictionary

  • strychnine — ► NOUN ▪ a bitter and highly poisonous substance obtained from nux vomica and related plants. ORIGIN from Greek strukhnos, denoting a kind of nightshade …   English terms dictionary

  • strychnine — [strik′nin, strik′nēn΄, strik′nīn΄] n. [Fr < ModL Strychnos < L < Gr strychnos, nightshade] a highly poisonous, colorless, crystalline alkaloid, C21H22N2O2, obtained from nux vomica and other similar plants …   English World dictionary

  • Strychnine — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Strychnine (homonymie). Strychnine Molécule de strychnine …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Strychnine — Chembox new ImageFile=Strychnine2.svg ImageSize=200px ImageFile1=Strychnine from xtal 3D balls.png IUPACName= OtherNames=Strychnidin 10 one Section1= Chembox Identifiers CASNo=57 24 9 PubChem=441071 SMILES= [H] [C@] ( [C@@] (C(C=CC=C7) =C7N34)5… …   Wikipedia

  • strychnine — Alkaloid obtained from the Indian tree Strychnos nux vomica ; specific blocking agent for the action of the amino acid transmitter glycine. Convulsive effects of strychnine are probably due to its blockage of inhibitory synapses onto spinal cord… …   Dictionary of molecular biology

  • strychnine — An alkaloid from Strychnos nux vomica; colorless crystals of intensely bitter taste, nearly insoluble in water. It stimulates all parts of the central nervous system, and was used as a stomachic, an antidote for depressant poisons, and in the… …   Medical dictionary

  • strychnine — [[t]strɪ̱kniːn, AM naɪn[/t]] N UNCOUNT Strychnine is a very poisonous drug which is sometimes used in very small amounts as a medicine …   English dictionary

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