- kainic acid
- A glutamate analog that exhibits powerful and long-acting excitatory and toxic activity on neurons; used as a research tool in neurobiology to destroy neurons and as an activator of glutamate receptors. Has been used as an anthelmintic against nematodes.
* * *kai·nic acid .kī-nik-, .kā- n an excitatory neurotoxin C10H15NO4 that is a glutamate analog orig. isolated from a dried red alga (Digenia simplex), that binds selectively to a subset of glutamate receptors which serve as ligand-gated ion channels on neurons, and that is used as an anthelmintic and experimentally to induce seizures and neurodegeneration in laboratory animals
* * *kain·ic ac·id (kānґik) an excitotoxin found in the seaweed Diginea simplex; it is 30 to 100 times as potent as glutamic acid and is used experimentally to study the excitatory mechanisms of glutamate transmitters.
Medical dictionary. 2011.