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a heterocyclic compound that is the nucleus of the purine bases such as adenine and guanine (which occur in DNA and RNA), and xanthine and hypoxanthine.

pur·ine (Pur),

(pyūr'ēn, -rin),
The parent substance of adenine, guanine, and other naturally occurring purine "bases."


1. A double-ringed, crystalline organic base, C5H4N4, that is the parent compound of a large group of biologically important compounds.
2. Any of a group of substituted derivatives of purine, including the nitrogen bases adenine and guanine, which are components of nucleic acids. Uric acid, caffeine, theobromine, and theophylline are also purines.


The parent substance of adenine, guanine, and other naturally occurring so-called purine bases; not known to exist as such in mammals.


one of two types of base found in NUCLEIC ACIDS, having a double ring structure; see ADENINE and GUANINE. Purines always pair with PYRIMIDINES in the two strands of DNA, ensuring a parallel-sided molecule.


A white crystalline substance that is one of the building blocks of DNA. Uric acid is produced when purine is broken down in the body.
Mentioned in: Gout, Uric Acid Tests
References in periodicals archive ?
In conjunction with the US FDA approval, the efficacy of Lumoxiti was studied in a single-arm, open-label clinical trial of 80 patients who had received prior treatment for HCL with at least two systemic therapies, including a purine nucleoside analog.
Forodesine is an orally-available transition-state analog inhibitor of purine nucleoside phosphorylase (PNP), a purine salvage pathway enzyme that is essential for the proliferation of T-cells and B-cells.