[ a-truh-peen, -pin ]
/ ˈæ trəˌpin, -pɪn /

noun Pharmacology.

a poisonous crystalline alkaloid, C17H23NO3, obtained from belladonna and other plants of the nightshade family, that prevents the response of various body structures to certain types of nerve stimulation: used chiefly to relieve spasms, to lessen secretions, and, topically, to dilate the pupil of the eye.

Nearby words

  1. atrophic vaginitis,
  2. atrophied,
  3. atrophoderma,
  4. atrophodermatosis,
  5. atrophy,
  6. atropism,
  7. atropos,
  8. atry,
  9. ats,
  10. att.

Origin of atropine

1830–40; < New Latin Atrop(a) belladonna genus (< Greek átropos; see Atropos) + -ine2 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for atropine

British Dictionary definitions for atropine


atropin (ˈætrəpɪn)

/ (ˈætrəˌpiːn, -pɪn) /


a poisonous alkaloid obtained from deadly nightshade, having an inhibitory action on the autonomic nervous system. It is used medicinally in pre-anaesthetic medication, to speed a slow heart rate, and as an emergency first-aid counter to exposure to chemical warfare nerve agents. Formula: C 17 H 23 NO 3

Word Origin for atropine

C19: from New Latin atropa deadly nightshade, from Greek atropos unchangeable, inflexible; see Atropos

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for atropine



1836, from Latin atropa "deadly nightshade" (from which the alkaloid poison is extracted), from Greek atropos "inflexible," also the name of one of the Fates (see Atropos) + chemical suffix -ine (2).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for atropine


[ ătrə-pēn′, -pĭn ]


An alkaloid obtained from belladonna and related plants, used to dilate the pupils of the eyes and as an antispasmodic, antisudorific, and anticholinergic.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for atropine


[ ătrə-pēn′, -pĭn ]

A poisonous, bitter, crystalline alkaloid derived from deadly nightshade and related plants. It is used as a drug to dilate the pupils of the eye and to inhibit muscle spasms. Chemical formula: C17H23NO3.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.