Using poison-frog compounds to control fire ants

Since its accidental introduction into the United States from South America in the 1930s, the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta, has spread throughout the southern United States, decimating small-animal populations, ...

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Alkaloid

Alkaloids are naturally occurring chemical compounds containing basic nitrogen atoms. The name derives from the word alkaline and was used to describe any nitrogen-containing base. Alkaloids are produced by a large variety of organisms, including bacteria, fungi, plants, and animals and are part of the group of natural products (also called secondary metabolites). Many alkaloids can be purified from crude extracts by acid-base extraction. Many alkaloids are toxic to other organisms. They often have pharmacological effects and are used as medications, as recreational drugs, or in entheogenic rituals. Examples are the local anesthetic and stimulant cocaine, the stimulant caffeine, nicotine, the analgesic morphine, or the antimalarial drug quinine. Some alkaloids have a bitter taste.

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