Definition of tyramine in US English:



  • A compound which occurs naturally in cheese and other foods and can cause dangerously high blood pressure in people taking a monoamine oxidase inhibitor.

    An amine related to tyrosine; chemical formula: C₆H₄(OH)CH₂CH₂NH₂

    • ‘These could lead to serious interactions with foods containing tyramine, alcohol, narcotics, and over-the-counter decongestants.’
    • ‘The phenolic substrates studied were p-cresol, p-hydroxyphenyl propionic acid, tyramine, and L- and D-tyrosine.’
    • ‘One piece with which Milne was pleased was his clarification of the tyramine monoamine-oxidase inhibitor interaction (the ‘cheese reaction’).’
    • ‘About nine per cent of people have at least one copy of a gene for 5HT2a that call for the amino acid tyramine at one point in the receptor protein.’
    • ‘Foods high in arylalkylamines (tryptophan, tyrosine, tyramine, and phenylalanine) have also been implicated in triggering IC symptoms.’


Early 20th century: from tyr(osine) + amine.