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Curare Story

Curare from De Materia Medica of Dioscórides.
Curare is a plant extract used by indigenous people in South America to paralyze their prey. They shot their prey with arrows dipped in curare extract. The animals quickly suffocated because their respiratory systems were paralyzed.


Curare is an awesome and terrifying plant extract! It works by blocking a specific neurotransmitter in the body. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that send information from one nerve cell (neuron) to another. Curare blocks acetylcholine—a neurotransmitter responsible for communication between neurons and muscle cells. When curare blocks acetylcholine, the brain can tell the body to move but the body can’t respond. Scientists identified the active ingredient in curare and used it to make a muscle-relaxing drug for surgery.
Poison Arrows

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