The principal alkaloid of ipecac, from the ground roots of Uragoga (or Cephaelis) ipecacuanha or U. acuminata, of the Rubiaceae. It is used as an amebicide in many different preparations and may cause serious cardiac, hepatic, or renal damage and violent diarrhea and vomiting. Emetine inhibits protein synthesis in eucaryotic but not prokaryotic cells.
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