Agents having as their major action the interruption of neural transmission at nicotinic receptors on postganglionic autonomic neurons. Because their actions are so broad, including blocking of sympathetic and parasympathetic systems, their therapeutic use has been largely supplanted by more specific drugs. They may still be used in the control of blood pressure in patients with acute dissecting aortic aneurysm and for the induction of hypotension in surgery.
Nicotine is highly toxic alkaloid. It is the prototypical agonist at nicotinic cholinergic receptors where it dramatically stimulates neurons and ultimately blocks synaptic transmission. Nicotine is also important medically because of its presence in tobacco smoke.
Clusters of neurons and their processes in the autonomic nervous system. In the autonomic ganglia, the preganglionic fibers from the central nervous system synapse onto the neurons whose axons are the postganglionic fibers innervating target organs. The ganglia also contain intrinsic neurons and supporting cells and preganglionic fibers passing through to other ganglia.
The d-form of AMPHETAMINE. It is a central nervous system stimulant and a sympathomimetic. It has also been used in the treatment of narcolepsy and of attention deficit disorders and hyperactivity in children. Dextroamphetamine has multiple mechanisms of action including blocking uptake of adrenergics and dopamine, stimulating release of monamines, and inhibiting monoamine oxidase. It is also a drug of abuse and a psychotomimetic.
One of the two major classes of cholinergic receptors. Nicotinic receptors were originally distinguished by their preference for NICOTINE over MUSCARINE. They are generally divided into muscle-type and neuronal-type (previously ganglionic) based on pharmacology, and subunit composition of the receptors.
Drugs that bind to and activate nicotinic cholinergic receptors (RECEPTORS, NICOTINIC). Nicotinic agonists act at postganglionic nicotinic receptors, at neuroeffector junctions in the peripheral nervous system, and at nicotinic receptors in the central nervous system. Agents that function as neuromuscular depolarizing blocking agents are included here because they activate nicotinic receptors, although they are used clinically to block nicotinic transmission.