Molecule of the Day

Cyprodenate (An oddity)

Cyprodenate is an old antidote for benzodiazepene overdose:


It is a relatively rare drug that doesn’t have a single aromatic ring – steroids are the broad class of exceptions that come to mind. It looks like this is some sort of cholinergic compound, but that’s just an educated guess. Doesn’t look like anyone uses it anymore, except some of the “smart drugs” crowd. Anyone know anything about it?


  1. #1 kirsten
    November 10, 2008

    Had to look this up, because I have never seen it used in hospital as a rescue drug. Apparently it is a stimulant – about as good as giving a drunk a cup of coffee.

    Now we use flumazenil, a GABA antagonist, instead.

  2. #2 Vince Noir
    November 11, 2008

    flumazenil is specifically a benzodiazepene antagonist, not a GABA agonist, right? The difference being that it only blocks GABA potentiation when a benzodiazepene is present…So theoretically it should have no effect in the absence of a benzo

  3. #3 vince noir
    November 12, 2008

    oops…make that “…not a GABA antagonist…”

  4. #4 PV
    November 13, 2008

    You can use Cyprodenate as a treatment in people who got intoxicated with antidepressives.

  5. #5 precordialthump
    November 18, 2008

    PV – I think you may be confusing cyprodenate with cyproheptadine. The latter drug has antihistaminergic and antiserotonergic effects and is sometimes used for the treatment of serotonin syndrome (eg. due to SSRI antidepressants).

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