Adrenaline (C9H13NO3) is a catecholamine and belongs to the family of biogenic amines.

L-adrenaline is a hormone and a neurotransmitter. Both of these transfer short lived impulses so they have to work quickly.

Adrenaline is in the family of adrenal medulla hormones. It is synthesized by the neurons in the adrenal medulla. Adrenaline has the opposite effect of insuline, being released when the glucose level in the blood is low. When released, it affects the mobilisation of glycogene from the liver and triacylglycerines (fat tissue). It also increases the rate of metabolism. The rise in blood sugar enables the muscles to ferment glucose.

Adrenaline works also as neurotransmitter which affect on the sympathetic nervous system. This neurotransmitter will be realeased by nervous stimulation in response to physical or mental stress. For instance, if you are in danger, adrenaline is released to help provide the energy to protect yourself or escape (flight or fight). Adrenaline increases the rate and strength of the heartbeat, dilates the bronchi and pupils, causes vasoconstriction and sweating and reduces clotting time of the blood. Blood is transferred from the skin to the skeletal muscles, coronary arteries, liver and brain where it is more use in a time of stress.

L-adrenaline is also used as sympathicomimeticum (a drug that helps the heart to beat), broncholyticum (a drugs that relaxes the brochial muscles) and antiasthmaticum (a drug to help asthma). It also is used to prevent bleeding during surgery. Because adrenaline cause vasoconstriction (contraction of blood vessels), it is administered in combination with local anaesthetics, giving a longer lasting effect which allows smaller doses of local anaesthetic to be used.

Molecular Weight           183.21 g/mol
Melting Point              215°C
Water Solubility           <0.01 g/100mL at 18°C
Standard Heat of Formation -439.17 kJ/mol
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