Summary: Plant extracts from several species, including genera STRYCHNOS and Chondodendron, which contain TETRAHYDROISOQUINOLINES that produce PARALYSIS of skeletal muscle. These extracts are toxic and must be used with the administration of artificial respiration.

Top Publications

  1. Filatov G, Aylwin M, White M. Selective enhancement of the interaction of curare with the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. Mol Pharmacol. 1993;44:237-41 pubmed
    ..investigated this particular mutation by examining the interaction of the competitive antagonist d-tubocurarine (curare) with the receptor...
  2. Bisset N. War and hunting poisons of the New World. Part 1. Notes on the early history of curare. J Ethnopharmacol. 1992;36:1-26 pubmed
    The history to about 1850 of the muscle-relaxant poison curare is discussed, especially the developments leading to the botanical identification of the plants that yield the alkaloidal active principles: Loganiaceae (Strychnos species) ..
  3. Költgen D, Brinkmeier H, Jockusch H. Myotonia and neuromuscular transmission in the mouse. Muscle Nerve. 1991;14:775-80 pubmed
    ..Three neuromuscular blockers, curare, flaxedil, and alpha-bungarotoxin, did not prevent mechanical myotonia of EDL and soleus muscles from the two ..
  4. Cousin M. Vulpian and not Claude Bernard first proposed the hypothesis of the motor end-plate as the site of action of curare. Anesthesiology. 2002;97:527-8 pubmed
  5. Ball C, Westhorpe R. Muscle relaxants--intocostrin. Anaesth Intensive Care. 2005;33:289 pubmed
  6. Strecker G, Jackson M. Curare binding and the curare-induced subconductance state of the acetylcholine receptor channel. Biophys J. 1989;56:795-806 pubmed
    The curare-induced subconductance state of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) of mouse skeletal muscle was examined using the patch-clamp technique. Two mechanisms for the generation of subconductance states were considered...
  7. Sine S. Molecular dissection of subunit interfaces in the acetylcholine receptor: identification of residues that determine curare selectivity. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1993;90:9436-40 pubmed
    ..By making gamma-delta chimeras and following the nearly 100-fold difference in curare affinity for the two binding sites, the present work identified residues of the gamma and delta subunits likely to ..
  8. McMahon D, Barlow R. Visual responses in teleosts. Electroretinograms, eye movements, and circadian rhythms. J Gen Physiol. 1992;100:155-69 pubmed
    ..Injection of curare abolished the sunfish eye movement potentials, unmasking the ERG...
  9. Crisci C. The ultimate curse. J Med Ethics. 1995;21:277; discussion 278-80 pubmed
    ..This paper tells the story of a doctor in a vegetative state. The approach towards him is quite different from that towards a common patient. The other physicians cannot deal with this situation with the necessary open mind. ..

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  1. Merwine D, Grzywacz N, Tjepkes D, Amthor F. Non-monotonic contrast behavior in directionally selective ganglion cells and evidence for its dependence on their GABAergic input. Vis Neurosci. 1998;15:1129-36 pubmed
    ..In support of this hypothesis, bath-applied GABA reduces responses to exogenous ACh under synaptic block, providing for the first time in the rabbit's retina, direct evidence of GABA receptors on DS cells. ..
  2. Markou A, Koob G. Construct validity of a self-stimulation threshold paradigm: effects of reward and performance manipulations. Physiol Behav. 1992;51:111-9 pubmed
    ..basis of reward was demonstrated by investigating the effects of two pharmacological agents, cocaine and curare, on the four measures derived from the discrete-trial current-threshold ICSS procedure...
  3. Unzueta Merino M, Hervás Puyal C, Villar Landeira J. [Robert R. Macintosh and Spain: a productive relationship]. Rev Esp Anestesiol Reanim. 2001;48:21-8 pubmed
    ..Those trips were less important, with the exception of a 1937 visit that inspired the design of the Oxford vaporizer, a technical concept based on simplicity, safety and the anesthesiologist's experience. ..
  4. Conti F. Claude Bernard's Des Fonctions du Cerveau: an ante litteram manifesto of the neurosciences?. Nat Rev Neurosci. 2002;3:979-85 pubmed publisher
  5. Hansen C, Rasmussen K. [Anesthesiologic aspects of narco-curare-electroshock treatment]. Ugeskr Laeger. 1990;152:1145-9 pubmed
    The physiology and side-effects of narco-curare-electric shock treatment are reviewed on the basis of the literature and, similarly, risk groups are delimited...
  6. Sibony O, Fouillot J, Luton D, Oury J, Blot P. Effects of neuromuscular blockade on fetal heart rate variability: a power spectrum analysis. J Appl Physiol (1985). 1995;79:63-5 pubmed
    ..for in utero magnetic resonance or invasive fetal procedures was achieved by fetal intravascular injection of curare between 32 and 36 amenorrhea weeks...
  7. Buzello W, Diefenbach C. [Curare and its successors. A 50-year's evolution]. Anasthesiol Intensivmed Notfallmed Schmerzther. 1992;27:290-9 pubmed
    The introduction of curare into clinical anaesthesia by Griffith and Johnson in 1942 contributed to the termination of the era where anaesthesia was a reversible intoxication rather than the result of controlled drug action...
  8. Feller M, Wellis D, Stellwagen D, Werblin F, Shatz C. Requirement for cholinergic synaptic transmission in the propagation of spontaneous retinal waves. Science. 1996;272:1182-7 pubmed
    ..The results indicate that the major source of synaptic input to retinal ganglion cells is a system of cholinergic amacrine cells, whose activity is required for wave propagation in the developing retina. ..
  9. Mao J, Price D, Coghill R, Mayer D, Hayes R. Spatial patterns of spinal cord [14C]-2-deoxyglucose metabolic activity in a rat model of painful peripheral mononeuropathy. Pain. 1992;50:89-100 pubmed
    ..In addition, the procedure of curare-induced paralysis in a separate group of CCI rats did not change the extent and patterns of metabolic activity ..
  10. Gomez C, Bhattacharyya B, Charnet P, Day J, Labarca C, Wollmann R, et al. A transgenic mouse model of the slow-channel syndrome. Muscle Nerve. 1996;19:79-87 pubmed
    ..Transgenic mice were abnormally sensitive to the neuromuscular blocker, curare. These observations demonstrate that we can predictably alter AChR function, synaptic responses, and muscle fiber ..
  11. Lee D, O Dowd D. Fast excitatory synaptic transmission mediated by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in Drosophila neurons. J Neurosci. 1999;19:5311-21 pubmed
  12. Dawance G, d Athis F, Peschaud J, Picot M, du Cailar J. [Risk of secondary neuromuscular blockade after autotransfusion of blood drawn from the patient following curare administration]. Ann Fr Anesth Reanim. 1994;13:17-22 pubmed
    ..78 at T11 vs 0.80 at T0). These data emphasize the importance of withdrawing blood units before administration of muscle relaxants.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) ..
  13. Pagala M, Venkatachari S, Herzlich B, Ravindran K, Namba T, Grob D. Effect of cocaine on responses of mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm preparation. Life Sci. 1991;48:795-802 pubmed
    ..reduction in the muscle AP and tension responses to direct muscle stimulation in the presence or absence of curare, and markedly reduced the overshoot, total potential, and maximum rate of rise and fall of intracellularly ..
  14. Brochard J, Delerm B, Sequeira Martinho H, Roy J. Instrumental conditioning of skin potential responses in curarized cats: non specific effects of a punishment procedure. Arch Ital Biol. 1991;129:97-112 pubmed
    ..The results obtained in three decorticated cats submitted to a punishment procedure are in accordance with such an hypothesis. Consequently the existence of operant autonomic learning remains unproven. ..
  15. Neely A, Lingle C. Two components of calcium-activated potassium current in rat adrenal chromaffin cells. J Physiol. 1992;453:97-131 pubmed
    ..This current was largely blocked by 200 nM-apamin or 200 microM-curare, was associated with slow Ca(2+)-dependent tail current, and exhibited little dependence on voltage...
  16. Wang J, Irnaten M, Venkatesan P, Evans C, Baxi S, Mendelowitz D. Synaptic activation of hypoglossal respiratory motorneurons during inspiration in rats. Neurosci Lett. 2002;332:195-9 pubmed
    ..In summary, non-N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors constitute the largest excitatory drive to hypoglossal neurons during inspiration, while NMDA, nicotinic receptors and gap junctions are also actively involved. ..
  17. Suppini A, Kaiser E, Sallaberry M, Colavolpe C, Pellissier D, Francois G. [The use of curare-like agents in resuscitation]. Ann Fr Anesth Reanim. 1999;18:341-54 pubmed
    ..The use of NBA in ITU patient should result from a rational decision making procedure, the blockade titrated with a TOF monitor and maintained as superficially and shortly as possible. ..
  18. Nedergaard O. Curare: the flying death. Pharmacol Toxicol. 2003;92:154-5 pubmed
  19. Ball C, Westhorpe R. Muscle relaxants--the early history. Anaesth Intensive Care. 2005;33:155 pubmed
  20. Gille O, Obeid I, Degrise C, Guerin P, Skalli W, Vital J. The use of curare during anesthesia to prevent iatrogenic muscle damage caused by lumbar spinal surgery through a posterior approach. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2007;32:402-5 pubmed
    Prospective randomized study of patients undergoing lumbar arthrodesis. To evaluate the use of curare during anesthesia to limit muscle lesions caused by surgery...
  21. Rogozov V, Hess L, Brezina A, Schreibrova J. The effectiveness of 112-year-old curare. Anesth Analg. 2008;106:676-7 pubmed publisher
  22. Foldes F. [Anesthesia before and after curare]. Anaesthesiol Reanim. 1993;18:128-31 pubmed
    Before the advent of curare, muscular relaxation essential for upper abdominal and intrathoracic surgery adequate operating conditions, could only be provided by deep ether or cyclopropane anaesthesia...
  23. Manzali de Sá I, Elisabetsky E. Medical knowledge exchanges between Brazil and Portugal: an ethnopharmacological perspective. J Ethnopharmacol. 2012;142:762-8 pubmed publisher
    ..This "Brazilian folk medicine" is usually described as a rich mixture of African, European, and Indigenous medical traditions...
  24. Revel M, Pons J, Lelaidier C, Fournet P, Vial M, Musset D, et al. Magnetic resonance imaging of the fetus: a study of 20 cases performed without curarization. Prenat Diagn. 1993;13:775-99 pubmed
    ..Fetal MRI may be performed without curarization. Surface coils allow the detailed analysis of brain parenchyma, and thus MRI is especially useful in the difficult prenatal diagnosis of fetal brain abnormalities. ..
  25. Oppenheim R, Prevette D, Tytell M, Homma S. Naturally occurring and induced neuronal death in the chick embryo in vivo requires protein and RNA synthesis: evidence for the role of cell death genes. Dev Biol. 1990;138:104-13 pubmed
    ..Therefore, neuronal death in a variety of situations may reflect the expression of a developmental fate that can normally only be overridden or suppressed by specific environmental signals (e.g., neurotrophic molecules). ..
  26. Hattori T, Maehashi H. Anti-curare action of stannous ion in the frog neuromuscular junction. Life Sci. 1988;42:2639-44 pubmed
    ..SnCl2 (1-50 microM) increased the amplitude of the endplate potential; that is, it exerted an anti-curare action. The resting potential and the membrane resistance of the muscle fiber were not altered by 30 microM SnCl2...
  27. Cohen A. Regenerated fibers of the lamprey spinal cord can coordinate fictive swimming in the presence of curare. J Neurobiol. 1988;19:193-8 pubmed
    ..In the study reported here curare was added to the bath to eliminate the possible contribution from reflexes mediated by contractions from any ..
  28. Dahm L, Landmesser L. The regulation of intramuscular nerve branching during normal development and following activity blockade. Dev Biol. 1988;130:621-44 pubmed
  29. Guth P, Dunn A, Kronomer K, Norris C. The cholinergic pharmacology of the frog saccule. Hear Res. 1994;75:225-32 pubmed
    ..This latter inhibition is antagonized by strychnine more potently than by curare, which is more potent than atropine...
  30. Duvaldestin P, Cunin P, Plaud B, Maison P. [French survey of neuromuscular relaxant use in anaesthetic practice in adults]. Ann Fr Anesth Reanim. 2008;27:483-9 pubmed publisher
    ..Underestimation of the risk of postoperative residual curarization is linked to the underestimation of the duration of competitive neuromuscular blocking agents. ..
  31. Vergnes M, Marescaux C, Depaulis A. Mapping of spontaneous spike and wave discharges in Wistar rats with genetic generalized non-convulsive epilepsy. Brain Res. 1990;523:87-91 pubmed
    ..The absence of spread to limbic structures and the implication of a precisely limited substrate in GNCE accounts for the clinical and pharmacological specificity of this particular kind of epilepsy. ..
  32. Akaaboune M, Culican S, Turney S, Lichtman J. Rapid and reversible effects of activity on acetylcholine receptor density at the neuromuscular junction in vivo. Science. 1999;286:503-7 pubmed
    ..The rapid and reversible alterations in AChR density at the neuromuscular junction in vivo parallel changes thought to occur in the central nervous system at synapses undergoing potentiation and depression. ..
  33. Yakel J, Trussell L, Jackson M. Three serotonin responses in cultured mouse hippocampal and striatal neurons. J Neurosci. 1988;8:1273-85 pubmed
    ..This response was similar to responses to dopamine, norepinephrine, and forskolin, all of which are known to activate adenylate cyclase in the CNS. ..
  34. Neff R, Humphrey J, Mihalevich M, Mendelowitz D. Nicotine enhances presynaptic and postsynaptic glutamatergic neurotransmission to activate cardiac parasympathetic neurons. Circ Res. 1998;83:1241-7 pubmed
  35. Takenaka Y. [Curare and Claude Bernard--how was his work introduced into Japanese scientific communities?]. Yakushigaku Zasshi. 2006;41:18-26 pubmed
    quot;Curare and Claude BERNARD" is a well known set of physiology in several western scientific and medical communities...
  36. Yakel J, Jackson M. 5-HT3 receptors mediate rapid responses in cultured hippocampus and a clonal cell line. Neuron. 1988;1:615-21 pubmed
    ..In both systems, the response is blocked by ICS 205-930, curare, and metoclopramide, while 2-methyl-5-HT is an agonist...
  37. Baux G, Tauc L. Presynaptic actions of curare and atropine on quantal acetylcholine release at a central synapse of Aplysia. J Physiol. 1987;388:665-80 pubmed
  38. Bradley R, Pagala M, Edge M. Multiple effects of alpha-toxins on the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. FEBS Lett. 1987;224:277-82 pubmed
    ..action potential and tetanus induced by repetitive nerve stimulation which was identical to the effects of curare. High concentrations of alpha-toxin and all concentrations of alpha-bungarotoxin reduced the response but produced ..
  39. Sacchi O, Rossi M, Canella R. The slow Ca(2+)-activated K+ current, IAHP, in the rat sympathetic neurone. J Physiol. 1995;483 ( Pt 1):15-27 pubmed
    ..7. The IAHP was significantly activated by a single action potential; it was turned on cumulatively by Ca2+ load during successive action potential discharge and acted to further limit cell excitability. ..
  40. Badetti C, Manelli J. [Curare and burns]. Ann Fr Anesth Reanim. 1994;13:705-12 pubmed
    ..These receptors explain both the hyperkaliemic response and the hypersensitivity to succinlycholine.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) ..
  41. Ball C, Westhorpe R. Muscle relaxants--reversal agents. Anaesth Intensive Care. 2006;34:415 pubmed
  42. Marchetti D, Haverkamp L, Clark R, McManaman J. Ontogeny of high- and low-affinity nerve growth factor receptors in the lumbar spinal cord of the developing chick embryo. Dev Biol. 1991;148:306-13 pubmed
  43. Alshuaib W, Hasan M, Cherian S, Fahim M. Increased calcium influx through acetylcholine receptors in dunce neurons. Int J Neurosci. 2004;114:115-28 pubmed
  44. Chen S. [Acetylcholine receptor antibody titer, sensitivity to curare electromyogram and disease severity in myasthenia gravis]. Zhonghua Shen Jing Jing Shen Ke Za Zhi. 1991;24:169-73, 189 pubmed
    ..There was a close relationship between the sensitivity to curare and disease severity, but only part of immunized animals appeared electromyogram change...
  45. Akasu T. Adrenaline inhibits muscarinic transmission in bullfrog sympathetic ganglia. Pflugers Arch. 1989;413:616-21 pubmed
    ..postsynaptic potential (EPSP) elicited by repetitive stimulations of preganglionic nerve fibres in the presence of curare (30 microM)...
  46. Morris C, Montpetit M, Sigurdson W, Iwasa K. Activation by curare of acetylcholine receptor channels in a murine skeletal muscle cell line. Can J Physiol Pharmacol. 1989;67:152-8 pubmed
    b>Curare action on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors has a number of facets, of which the best known is competitive antagonism. Here we describe the weak agonist action of 10(-5) M curare on the murine skeletal muscle cell line, G8...
  47. Roatta S, Windhorst U, Ljubisavljevic M, Johansson H, Passatore M. Sympathetic modulation of muscle spindle afferent sensitivity to stretch in rabbit jaw closing muscles. J Physiol. 2002;540:237-48 pubmed
    ..also evaluated during changes in the state of intrafusal muscle fibre contraction induced by succinylcholine and curare. In a population of 124 MSAs, 106 units (85.4 %) were affected by sympathetic stimulation...
  48. Gallagher K, Fadel P, Strømstad M, Ide K, Smith S, Querry R, et al. Effects of partial neuromuscular blockade on carotid baroreflex function during exercise in humans. J Physiol. 2001;533:861-70 pubmed intervention) and with partial neuromuscular blockade (to increase central command influence) using Norcuron (curare)...
  49. Zhou L, Zhang C, Messing A, Chiu S. Temperature-sensitive neuromuscular transmission in Kv1.1 null mice: role of potassium channels under the myelin sheath in young nerves. J Neurosci. 1998;18:7200-15 pubmed
    ..This paper demonstrates that under certain situations of physiological stress, the functional role of myelin-covered K channels is dramatically enhanced as the transition zone at the neuromuscular junction is approached. ..
  50. Okamoto M, Walewski J, Artusio J, Riker W. Neuromuscular pharmacology in rat neonates: development of responsiveness to prototypic blocking and reversal drugs. Anesth Analg. 1992;75:361-71 pubmed
    ..This result indicates that in rat neonates, pharmacodynamic rather than pharmacokinetic mechanisms predominate in the development of responsiveness to dTc. ..
  51. Lee R, Balick M. Poison or medicine? A note from the forest. Altern Ther Health Med. 2004;10:74-7 pubmed
  52. Baillard C, Larmignat P, Fournier J, Denantes C, Cupa M, Samama C. Anesthesia: with or without curare?. Can J Anaesth. 2003;50:522 pubmed
  53. D Honneur G. [Diprivan: intubation without curare]. Ann Fr Anesth Reanim. 1994;13:600-4 pubmed Lidocaine, injected as premedication at a dose of 1.5 potentiates the effect of alfentanil. The order of injection of the induction agents is important, as it determines the exact moment for laryngoscopy and intubation. ..