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The actinomycins are a class of polypeptide antibiotics isolated from soil bacteria of the genus Streptomyces, of which the most significant is actinomycin D. It was the first antibiotic isolated by Selman Waksman and his co-worker H. B. Woodruff in 1940. Actinomycin D is one of the older chemotherapy drugs, and has been used in therapy for many years. It is a clear, yellow liquid administered intravenously and most commonly used in treatment of a variety of cancers including gestational trophoblastic neoplasia, Wilms' tumor and rhabdomyosarcoma. It was the first antibiotic shown to have anti-cancer activity, but is not normally used as such, as it is highly toxic, causing damage to genetic material.

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Adafenoxate is a compound related to centrophenoxine, that has been found to act as a nootropic in rats.


Afimoxifene is a selective estrogen receptor modulator whose active ingredient is 4-hydroxytamoxifen which is identical to the active metabolite of tamoxifen. It is a transdermal gel formulation. It has completed a phase II clinical trial for the treatment of cyclical mastalgia.

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Agomelatine is an antidepressant. It is marketed for the treatment of major depressive disorder and has been reported to have a reduced level of sexual side effects as well as discontinuation effects compared to some other antidepressants. Agomelatine may also have positive effects on sleep. Agomelatine resynchronises circadian rhythms in animal models of delayed sleep phase syndrome and other circadian rhythm disruptions. It increases noradrenaline and dopamine release specifically in the frontal cortex and has no influence on the extracellular levels of serotonin. Agomelatine has shown an antidepressant-like effect in animal models of depression as well as in models with circadian rhythm desynchronisation and in models related to stress and anxiety. In humans, agomelatine has positive phase shifting properties.

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Alaproclate is a psychoactive drug and research chemical that was being developed as an antidepressant by the Swedish pharmaceutical company Astra AB (now AstraZeneca) in the 1970s. It acts as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, and along with zimelidine and indalpine, was one of the first of its kind. Development was discontinued due to the observation of liver complications in rodent studies. Some studies have found that it acts as a noncompetitive NMDA antagonist, but does not have discriminative stimulus properties similar to phencyclidine.


Aleglitazar is a peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor agonist with affinity to PPARα and PPARγ, which is being developed for the treatment of type II diabetes. It is currently in phase II clinical trials.

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Alfatradiol is a 5α-reductase inhibitor used topically for the treatment of androgenic alopecia in men and women. It is used in form of an ethanolic solution for topical application on the scalp.

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Allopurinol is a drug used primarily to treat hyperuricemia and its complications, including chronic gout. The primary use of allopurinol is to treat hyperuricemia and its complications. It does not alleviate acute attacks of gout, but is useful in chronic gout to prevent future attacks. Likewise, allopurinol commonly is used as prophylaxis with chemotherapeutic treatments, which can rapidly produce severe hyperuricemia. Other established indications for allopurinol therapy include ischemic reperfusion injury, kidney stones with a uric acid component, and protozoal infections. Because allopurinol is not a uricosuric, it can be used in patients with poor kidney function. A recent study has suggested that allopurinol can help reduce the effects of angina in ischaemic heart disease by reducing the workload on the heart.

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Alnespirone is a selective 5-HT1A receptor full agonist of the azapirone chemical class. It has antidepressant and anxiolytic effects.

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