• Tian-Tian Lei
  • Jin-Hua Wang
  • Guan-Hua DuEmail author


Galantamine is an Amaryllidaceae alkaloid which is first obtained from the plant of snowdrop (Galanthus nivalis). Although the plants of Galanthus are native species in many areas in Europe, its earliest pharmaceutical applications are seldom known. To be used as an antidote may be the plants of Galanthus’ oldest medicinal records. In the early 1950s, Soviet Union’s scientists started modern medicine research of galantamine. Initially, galantamine hydrobromide was used in anesthesia to antagonize the effects of non-depolarizing muscle relaxants. Galantamine is a reversible acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitor, which is highly selective and competitive. It blocks the degradation of acetylcholine (Ach) by AChE and thus achieves efficacy. Galantamine hydrobromide launched into market firstly in 1995 and has been marketed in more than 20 countries for the indication of mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Although galantamine hydrobromide has good tolerance and safety, it only temporarily alleviates the symptoms of AD patients.


Galantamine Antidote AChE inhibitor AD 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. and People's Medical Publishing House, PR of China 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Beijing Key Laboratory of Drug Targets Identification and Drug Screening, Centre for Pharmaceutical Screening, Institute of Materia MedicaChinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical CollegeBeijingChina

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