Xanthine (3,7-dihydro-purine-2,6-dione), is a purine base found in most body tissues and fluids and in other organisms.
Xanthine is a product on the pathway of purine degradation
Xanthine is subsequently converted to uric acid by the action of the xanthine oxidase enzyme.
People with the rare genetic disorder xanthinuria
lack sufficient xanthine oxidase and cannot convert xanthine to uric acid.
Clinical significance of xanthine derivatives
Derivatives of xanthine, known collectively as xanthines
, are a group of alkaloids
commonly used for their effects as mild stimulants
and as bronchodilators
, notably in treating the symptoms of asthma
. In contrast to other, more potent stimulants, they only inhibit the actions of sleepiness-inducing adenosine
, making them somewhat less effective as stimulants than sympathomimetic amines
. Due to widespread effects, the therapeutic range
is narrow, making them merely a second-line asthma treatment. The therapeutic level is 10-20 micrograms/mL blood; signs of toxicity include tremor, nausea, nervousness, and tachycardia/arrhythmia.
Methylated xanthine derivatives include caffeine, paraxanthine, theophylline, and theobromine. These drugs inhibit phosphodiesterase and antagonise adenosine. Xanthines are also found very rarely as constituents of nucleic acids.
||Found In |
|| Coffee, Guarana, Yerba mate, Tea |
|| Chocolate, Yerba mate |
|| Tea |
|| plants, animals |