a bitter, crystalline alkaloid, CHNO, present in coffee, tea, kola nuts, etc.: it prolongs the stimulating effects of cyclic AMP on the heart and central nervous system
also sp. caf·fein′
Origin of caffeineGerman kaffein (now coffeïn, after Modern Latin coffea, coffee); coined by F. F. Runge (1795-1867), German chemist from kaffee, coffee ( from French café from Italian caffè, coffee) + -in, -ine
A bitter white alkaloid, C8H10N4O2, found in certain plants such as cacao, coffee, kola, and tea, that stimulates the central nervous system and body metabolism and is used in medicine, usually in combination with other drugs, to relieve headaches and treat respiratory conditions in premature infants.
Origin of caffeineGerman Kaffein ( from Kaffee coffee ) or French caféine both from French café coffee ; see café .