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Effect of the cholinesterase inhibiting substance galanthamine on human EEG and visual evoked potentials.

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Abteilung für Klinische Neurophysiologie, Freie Universität Berlin, F.R.G.


The action of galanthamine (GAL), a cholinesterase inhibiting substance, on resting EEG and on flash visual evoked potentials (VEPs) was tested in 9 healthy subjects. Alpha power was increased significantly in 4 of 8 subjects after the infusion of 10 mg, which provided a median inhibition of 47% of acetylcholinesterase in erythrocytes. Mean alpha frequency and peak alpha frequency decreased significantly in 5 of the 8 subjects by 0.22-0.98 Hz. Alpha power increase and alpha frequency decrease were not accompanied by changes in theta power. The amplitudes of the late components of the flash VEP were increased in 8 of 9 subjects receiving doses of 10-35 mg of GAL, while the early components remained unaffected. Increase of late VEP components was significantly correlated with the strength of cholinesterase inhibition. The synchronizing effect of GAL in these healthy volunteers obviously contrasts with the known desynchronizing effect of physostigmine in animal experiments.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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