DR TIM EVANS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR TIM EVANS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Zolpidem sedative drug, molecular model. This drug, marketed under several brand names including Ambien and Stilnoct, is used for the short-term treatment of insomnia. It binds to receptors of the inhibitory GABA neurotransmitter in the brain, thus stabilising brain activity and inducing sleep. At higher doses it can be used as an anticonvulsant to treat epilepsy, and there is some evidence that it is able to wake patients from a persistent vegetative state. Zolpidem is gaining popularity as a recreational drug as it can induce hallucinations and euphoria. Atoms in this model are represented by coloured spheres; carbon is yellow, hydrogen is white, oxygen is purple, and nitrogen is turquoise.
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