Drugs that inhibit cholinesterases. The neurotransmitter ACETYLCHOLINE is rapidly hydrolyzed, and thereby inactivated, by cholinesterases. When cholinesterases are inhibited, the action of endogenously released acetylcholine at cholinergic synapses is potentiated. Cholinesterase inhibitors are widely used clinically for their potentiation of cholinergic inputs to the gastrointestinal tract and urinary bladder, the eye, and skeletal muscles; they are also used for their effects on the heart and the central nervous system.
A rapid-onset, short-acting cholinesterase inhibitor used in cardiac arrhythmias and in the diagnosis of myasthenia gravis. It has also been used as an antidote to curare principles.
Severe irritant and vesicant of skin, eyes, and lungs. It may cause blindness and lethal lung edema and was formerly used as a war gas. The substance has been proposed as a cytostatic and for treatment of psoriasis. It has been listed as a known carcinogen in the Fourth Annual Report on Carcinogens (NTP-85-002, 1985) (Merck, 11th ed).
Investigational New Drug Application
An application that must be submitted to a regulatory agency (the FDA in the United States) before a drug can be studied in humans. This application includes results of previous experiments; how, where, and by whom the new studies will be conducted; the chemical structure of the compound; how it is thought to work in the body; any toxic effects found in animal studies; and how the compound is manufactured. (From the "New Medicines in Development" Series produced by the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association and published irregularly.)
United States Food and Drug Administration
Myasthenic Syndromes, Congenital
A heterogeneous group of disorders characterized by a congenital defect in neuromuscular transmission at the NEUROMUSCULAR JUNCTION. This includes presynaptic, synaptic, and postsynaptic disorders (that are not of autoimmune origin). The majority of these diseases are caused by mutations of various subunits of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (RECEPTORS, NICOTINIC) on the postsynaptic surface of the junction. (From Arch Neurol 1999 Feb;56(2):163-7)
Persian Gulf Syndrome
Unexplained symptoms reported by veterans of the Persian Gulf War with Iraq in 1991. The symptoms reported include fatigue, skin rash, muscle and joint pain, headaches, loss of memory, shortness of breath, gastrointestinal and respiratory symptoms, and extreme sensitivity to commonly occurring chemicals. (Nature 1994 May 5;369(6475):8)
A disorder of neuromuscular transmission characterized by weakness of cranial and skeletal muscles. Autoantibodies directed against acetylcholine receptors damage the motor endplate portion of the NEUROMUSCULAR JUNCTION, impairing the transmission of impulses to skeletal muscles. Clinical manifestations may include diplopia, ptosis, and weakness of facial, bulbar, respiratory, and proximal limb muscles. The disease may remain limited to the ocular muscles. THYMOMA is commonly associated with this condition. (Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, p1459)