Volume 24, Issue 5
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



The effect of the antischistosomal drug hycanthone on the motor activity of was studied in vitro. Hycanthone stimulates motor activity at concentrations of 10 to 10 M, and partially blocks the paralytic effects of carbachol and physostigmine. Lucanthone, a closely related although less active congener of hycanthone, does not produce these same effects in vitro. Some blocking of acetylcholine can also be produced by atropine, although this drug is less active in this regard than is hycanthone. These findings suggest that the therapeutic efficacy of hycanthone may be related to interference with acetylcholine receptors in schistosomes. Hycanthone is an inhibitor of acetylcholinesterase (ACHE) from , but is less effective against ACHE of mammalian origin. In contrast, physostigmine inhibits the mammalian enzyme more effectively than it does the helminth enzyme. These observations suggest that schistosome ACHE differs from the mammalian enzyme with respect to the configuration of the active center, and that hycanthone may have a selective affinity for schistosomal cholinergic systems.


Article metrics loading...

The graphs shown below represent data from March 2017
Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Most Cited This Month

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error