acetylcholinesterase inhibitor

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acetylcholinesterase inhibitor

An agent that interferes with acetylcholinesterase, thereby inhibiting the breakdown of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine.
Examples of AChEIs
Venoms, poisons, nerve agents, organophosphate pesticides, tetrahydrocannibol (THC), carbamates (including physostigmine, neostigmine, pyridostigmine).

Medical uses of AChEIs
Antidote for organophosphate poisoning, Myasthenia gravis, glaucoma, Lewy body dementia, Alzheimer’s disease.


An agent that blocks a cellular receptor, stops a chemical reaction, prevents an enzyme from working, or suppresses a muscle or nerve.

ACE inhibitor

Any of a class of drugs that block the effects of angiotensin-converting enzyme, preventing the formation of angiotensin II and therefore preventing a rise in blood pressure. Drugs from this class are used to treat hypertension, heart failure, myocardial infarction, and, in diabetics, to prevent and treat chronic kidney disease.

acetylcholinesterase inhibitor

Cholinesterase inhibitor.

alpha–2 plasmin inhibitor

Alpha–2 antiplasmin.

alpha-glucosidase inhibitor

An oral drug that lowers blood sugars by preventing carbohydrate absorption from the gastrointestinal tract.

5-alpha reductase inhibitor

A medication to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia. It blocks the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone.

angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor

Abbreviation: ACE inhibitor.
Any of the therapeutic agents that inhibit conversion of angiotensin I to angiotensin II. ACE inhibitors are used to treat hypertension and heart failure and to protect kidney function in patients with diabetes mellitus.

aromatase inhibitor

Any of a class of drugs that block the synthesis of estrogen in the body. A number of these agents have been developed to treat breast cancer, which is often a hormone-responsive malignancy.

attachment inhibitor

Entry inhibitor.

bone resorption inhibitor

A class of drugs that prevent or retard osteoporosis. Examples include the bisphosphonates.

cholesteryl ester transfer protein inhibitor

Any drug that inhibits the transfer of cholesteryl esters from high-density lipoproteins (HDLs) to other lipoproteins. Drugs from this class increase HDL levels, potentially improving the lipid profiles of patients and decreasing their risk of atherosclerosis.

cholinesterase inhibitor

Abbreviation: ChEI
Any of a class of drugs that prevent the degradation of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which is involved in memory and learning. Drugs from this class are used to treat Alzheimer’s dementia.
Synonym: acetylcholinesterase inhibitor

competitive inhibitor

1. A chemical that binds to or blocks another reagent from participating in a reaction.
2. A medication, hormone, or other intercellular messenger that binds and blocks the cellular receptor or target enzyme of another agent. Drugs that act by competitive inhibition may treat or prevent disease by inactivating pathogenic enzymes or by blocking the effects of hormones or precursor molecules. For example, protease inhibitors interfere with production of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) by binding and inactivating the protease enzyme; selective estrogen-receptor modulators limit the impact of estrogen by replacing this hormone on cells sensitive to its effects.

cyclooxygenase inhibitor

Any agent that suppresses inflammation by blocking the inflammatory effects of cyclooxygenase.

dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitor

Abbreviation: DPP-4 inhibitor

direct thrombin inhibitor

Abbreviation: DP
Any medication or substance that interferes with the coagulation of blood by blocking the action of thrombin. Unlike heparins, which are anticoagulants that require the presence of antithrombin to inactivate thrombin, DTIs exert their effects without an intermediary. DTIs can be used to treat and prevent clots in both arteries and veins (although heparin and warfarin are usually preferred for these uses). They are an alternative to heparin in patients with a history of heparin-induced thrombocytopenia. The primary side effect of DTIs is bleeding.

DPP-4 inhibitor

dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitor.

dual reuptake inhibitor

An antidepressant medication that works by blocking the reuptake of both serotonin and norepinephrine.

entry inhibitor

Any agent that prevents a pathogen (e.g., human immunodeficiency virus) from binding to cell membranes and infecting cells.
Synonym: attachment inhibitor

glycoprotein IIB/IIIa receptor inhibitor

Any of a class of drugs that block the fibrinogen receptor on the surface of platelets. Drugs from this class are used to treat acute myocardial infarction, unstable angina pectoris, and other acute coronary syndromes. The most common side effect of treatment with these drugs is bleeding.

HMG CoA enzyme inhibitor


integrase inhibitor

Any agent that prevents the human immunodeficiency virus from inserting its viral DNA into host cell chromosomes.

matrix metalloproteinase inhibitor

An agent that inhibits cancer cells by blocking their abilities to invade tissues, demand new blood supply, and metastasize.

metalloprotease inhibitor

Metalloproteinase inhibitor.

metalloproteinase inhibitor

Any of numerous compounds that inhibit the activity of the metalloproteinase family of enzymes. These agents share the ability to suppress or eliminate the enzyme activity of the metalloproteinases. Agents identified in this group include the tetracycline antibiotics, numerous specially designed synthetic peptides and proteins, chemicals such as ethylenediaminetetra-acetic acid (EDTA), and a variety of agents used in cancer chemotherapy. Synonym: metalloprotease inhibitor

monoamine oxidase inhibitor

Abbreviation: MAOI
Any of a group of drugs that can be used to treat depression and Parkinson's disease. Nonselective versions of these medications produced hypertensive crises and other severe side effects when they were taken with tyramine-containing foods (some cheeses) and several other drugs. Newer members of this class of drugs do not have these effects, but should be used with caution, esp. by those taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.


MAOIs may have unfavorable drug-drug interactions with many anesthetics and should be discontinued approximately two weeks before surgery.
See: tyramine

neuraminidase inhibitor

Any of a class of antiviral drugs that block neuraminidase, which helps the influenza virus to bud from cells it has infected so that it can spread to other ciliated epithelial cells of the respiratory tract. Agents in this class include oseltamivir and zanamivir.

nonnucleoside analog reverse transcriptase inhibitor

Abbreviation: NNRTI
Any of a class of antiretroviral drugs used to treat those infected with HIV. NNRTIs bind with and inhibit the activity of reverse transcriptase, an enzyme needed to transcribe viral RNA into the host cell DNA. Examples include nevirapine, delavirdine, and efavirenz.

nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor

Abbreviation: NRTI
Any of a class of antiretroviral drugs used to treat patients with HIV infection. NRTIs prevent transcription of viral RNA to host DNA by interfering with the action of the enzyme reverse transcriptase. Zidovudine, dideoxyinosine, zalcitabine, d4T, and abacavir are NRTIs. See: reverse transcriptase inhibitor

phosphodiesterase inhibitor

Abbreviation: PDE inhibitor
Any agent that blocks phosphodiesterase, inhibiting the production of second messengers within cells, such as cyclic adenosine monophosphate or cyclic glucose monophosphate. Drugs that inhibit PDE include sildenafil, an agent used to treat erectile dysfunction, and other agents used as positive inotropes and vasodilators in heart failure.

prostaglandin inhibitor

A substance that inhibits the production of prostaglandins. Nonsteroidal and steroidal anti-inflammatory agents are two major categories of such inhibitors.

protease inhibitor

1. A substance that inhibits the action of enzymes.
2. Any of a class of medications that prevent immature virions (as of hepatitis viruses or HIV) from assembling into structures capable of replication.

proton pump inhibitor

Abbreviation: PPI
Any of a class of medications that eliminate acid production in the stomach. Thes drugs are used to treat peptic ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux disease, Heliobacter pylori infection, and related disorders. Omeprazole and lansoprazole are members of this drug class.

reverse transcriptase inhibitor

Abbreviation: RTI
Any of a class of antiretroviral agents that competitively inhibit the reverse transcriptase enzyme of HIV and other viruses.
See: antiretroviral

selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor

Abbreviation: SSRI
Any of a class of drugs that interfere with serotonin transport, used in treating depression, obsessive-compulsive behaviors, eating disorders, and social phobias. Examples include fluoxetine (Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil), and sertraline.


The use of SSRIs in the treatment of depression may sometimes be associated with an increased risk of suicide, esp. during the initiation of treatment. The risk is greatest among children and adolescents. All patients who begin treatment with SSRIs should be monitored closely for evidence that they intend to harm themselves.

serine protease inhibitor

Abbreviation: serpin
Any of the compounds that inhibit platelet function and coagulation. Serpins have been used to reduce deposition of microemboli in cases of disseminated intravascular coagulation associated with sepsis.

serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor

Abbreviation: SNRI
An antidepressant medication (such as duloxetine or venlafaxine) that elevates mood by blocking neurons from taking up both norepinephrine and serotonin. Combined reuptake inhibitors differ from medications such as sertraline (Zoloft) or fluoxetine (Prozac), which are relatively selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, and from tricyclic antidepressants, which primarily prevent the reuptake of norepinephrine by brain cells. SNRIs treat neuropathic pain as well as depression.

tumor necrosis factor alpha inhibitor

A drug that blocks the effects of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha), a biologically active cytokine that is a critical element of the inflammatory response. Such drugs, which include adalimumab, etanercept, and infliximab, are agents used to treat autoimmune illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis.


Because these drugs are immunologically active, patients with active infection or those with chronic infections such as tuberculosis should not use them. These agents also sometimes increase the risk of cancers and have rarely been associated with demyelinating diseases of the central nervous system such as multiple sclerosis.

vasopeptidase inhibitor

Any of a class of medications that blocks the actions of both angiotensin converting enzymes (ACE) and neural endopeptidase. Drugs from this class may be used to treat heart failure.
References in periodicals archive ?
But about 80% of patients on cholinesterase inhibitors have a delay in decline of 6-9 months.
The following two cases show neurocognitive deficits after different types of poisoning events by cholinesterase inhibitors (carbamates and OPs): the first case (AMF) was due to accidental ingestion of a carbamate compound, and the second (PVM) was a greenhouse worker with a history of repeated poisonings while working with OPs, carbamates, or both together.
The degree of severity of AD is currently measured using the Mini-Mental State Evaluation (MMSE), a screening tool which clinicians state is not the best means for identifying who may benefit from cholinesterase inhibitors," explains Dr Ian Howe.
A synergistic effect may be expected when cholinesterase inhibitors, including donepezil hydrochloride, are given concurrently with succinylcholine, similar neuromuscular blocking agents, or cholinergic agonists such as bethanechol.
Cholinesterase inhibition kinetics were determined for the most potent cholinesterase inhibitors, namely [alpha]-mangostin, [gamma]-mangostin and garcinone C.
paracetamol and household pesticides such as anticoagulant rodenticides, pyrethroids, some cholinesterase inhibitors and irritant/corrosive cleaning agents, are readily accessible on supermarket shelves in SA.
The identification of this gene means that doctors can order genetic analysis and confirm the condition allowing earlier treatment with cholinesterase inhibitors," explained Prof Hanns Lochmuller of the Institute of Human Genetics at Newcastle University.
Donepezil is a piperidine-type cholinesterase inhibitor, which exerts reversible, non-competitive inhibition of acetylcholinesterase, being structurally distinct from the other cholinesterase inhibitors available today.
BACKGROUND/AIMS: The purpose of this systematic review was to compare the safety and tolerability of the cholinesterase inhibitors (ChEIs) donepezil, rivastigmine and galantamine for treating mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients in routine clinical practice.
Cholinesterase inhibitors can have effects on the heart, including reports of hospital visits for syncope and bradycardia, for example.
After over two years of deliberations over the value of acetyl cholinesterase inhibitors for all patients diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, it is a sad day for patients and their carers" said John Freeman, Managing Director of Shire's UK commercial operation.
Developmental neurotoxicity of chlorpyrifos modeled in vitro: comparative effects of metabolites and other cholinesterase inhibitors on DNA synthesis in PC12 and C6 cells.