A series of novel 2-substituted acetylenic pyrrolidines and piperidines related to oxotremorine (1) were prepared and evaluated in vitro as muscarinic cholinergic agents at brain M1 and M2 receptors. One analogue, 3-(2-oxo-1-pyrrolidinyl)-1-[2(R)-pyrrolidinyl]-1-propyne hydrogen oxalate (6a), was found to be a partial agonist producing a PI hydrolysis response at cortical M1 receptors approximately 3-fold larger than that produced by 1. The intrinsic activity profile of 6a at brain muscarinic receptors is similar to those of azetidine oxo analogue 2 and dimethylamino oxo analogue. All three compounds are partial M1 agonists and full M2 agonists; however, the profile of 6a in binding studies is significantly different. While 2 and 3 exhibit large M2 selectivities ranging between 8-fold to several hundred-fold, the binding profile of 6a shows almost no subtype selectivity.