probably from French, from New Latin Brucea, genus name of Brucea antidysenterica, a shrub
First Known Use: 1823
nounbru·cine \ˈbrü-ˌsēn\(Medical Dictionary)
Medical Definition of BRUCINE
: a poisonous alkaloid C23H26N2O4 found with strychnine especially in nux vomica
Biographical Note for BRUCINE
Bruce\ˈbrüs\ , James(1730–1794), British explorer. Bruce is famous primarily for his journey in 1768–1773 to the source of the Blue Nile in Ethiopia. In the course of his travels he encountered a new tree (Brucea antidysenterica) and introduced the seeds to Great Britain. In 1779 the genus containing this tree was named in his honor. In 1819 a new alkaloid was isolated from a sample of bark erroneously thought to be from this tree. The alkaloid was called brucine after the botanist although it was later discovered that the bark was actually from the nux vomica.