A substance that elicits an active physiological or behavioral response.
- Some people find that coffee brings out tremor; this is due to the presence of caffeine, which is an excitant; these effects are not, however, universal.
- The resulting synaptic inhibition is characterized by either a depressant or an excitant effect, depending on the population of cells involved.
Early 17th century: perhaps suggested by French excitant.
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