1. Diminishing functional tone or activity. 2. An agent that reduces nervous or functional activity, such as a sedative or anesthetic. [L. de-primo, pp. -pressus, to press down]

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de·pres·sant -ənt adj tending to depress esp lowering or tending to lower functional or vital activity <a drug with a \depressant effect on heart rate>
depressant n one that depresses specif an agent that reduces bodily functional activity or an instinctive desire (as appetite) <a \depressant of intestinal spasm>

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an agent that reduces the normal activity of any body system or function. Drugs such as general anaesthetic, barbiturate, and opiates are depressants of the central nervous system and respiration. cytotoxic drug, such as azathioprine, are depressants of the levels of white blood cells.

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de·pres·sant (de-presґənt) 1. diminishing functional activity. 2. an agent that reduces functional activity and the vital energies in general by producing muscular relaxation and diaphoresis.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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