Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences

, Volume 64, Issue 16, pp 2153–2169 | Cite as

Caffeine analogs: biomedical impact

  • J. W. DalyEmail author


Caffeine, widely consumed in beverages, and many xanthine analogs have had a major impact on biomedical research. Caffeine and various analogs, the latter designed to enhance potency and selectivity toward specific biological targets, have played key roles in defining the nature and role of adenosine receptors, phosphodiesterases, and calcium release channels in physiological processes. Such xanthines and other caffeine-inspired heterocycles now provide important research tools and potential therapeutic agents for intervention in Alzheimer’s disease, asthma, cancer, diabetes, and Parkinson’s disease. Such compounds also have activity as analgesics, antiinflammatories, antitussives, behavioral stimulants, diuretics/natriuretics, and lipolytics. Adverse effects can include anxiety, hypertension, certain drug interactions, and withdrawal symptoms.


Adenosine receptor caffeine calcium GABA receptor phosphodiesterase xanthine 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Bioorganic Chemistry, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney DiseasesNational Institutes of Health, DHHSBethesdaUSA

Personalised recommendations