Drugs which oppose acetylcholine

These may be divided into:

Antimuscarinic drugs which act principally at postganglionic cholinergic (parasympathetic) nerve endings, i.e. atropine-related drugs (see Fig. 21.1, site 2). Muscarinic receptors can be subdivided according to their principal sites, namely in the brain and gastric parietal cells (M:), heart (M2) and glandular and smooth muscle cells (M3). As with many receptors, the molecular basis of the subtypes has been defined together with two further cloned subtypes (M4 and Ms) for which no functional counterpart has yet been described.

Antinicotinic drugs

Ganglion-blocking drugs (Fig. 21.1, site 1) (see Ch. 24).

Neuromuscular blocking drugs (Fig. 21.1, site 5) (see Ch. 18).

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