Piperine, conine, atropine, belladonine, cocaine, hyoscyamine and nicotine have been already synthesized; the constitution of several others requires confirmation, while there remain many important alkaloids - quinine, morphine, strychnine, &c. - whose constitution remains unknown.
Of these the more important are atropine (or atropia), hyoscyamine, hyoscine and belladonine; atropine is the most important, occurring as the malate to the extent of about o 4 7% in the leaves, and from o.
Atropine is optically inactive; hyoscyamine, possibly a physical isomer, which yields atropine when heated to 108.6°, is laevorotatory.
Henbane yields a poisonous alkaloid, hyoscyamine, which is stated to have properties almost identical with those of atropine, from which it differs in being more soluble in water.
In acute mania it acts like hyoscyamine in producing sleep. In large doses stramonium is a narcotic poison producing the wellmarked stages of exaltation of function, diminution of functional activity, and later loss of function, sinking into coma and paralysis.
Atropine, hyoscyamine, homatropine, duboisine, daturine and some other bodies have a paralysing action upon the ends of the motor and secretory nerves.