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October 19, 1946


JAMA. 1946;132(7):389-390. doi:10.1001/jama.1946.02870420029011

Several of the alkyl fluorophosphates described by Lange and Krueger in 1932 have been studied for their effects on the body. McCombie and Adrian and their associates noted the similarity between the cholinergic effects of the fluorophosphates and those of physostigmine. In the chemical theory of mediation of nerve impulses through the autonomic nervous system acetylcholine is the mediator. The enzyme cholinesterase, found at sites where acetylcholine is liberated by the nerve impulse, causes rapid hydrolysis of acetylcholine. The acetylcholine-like action of physostigmine is thought to be due to an enzyme inhibition of cholinesterase in vivo, with resultant accumulation of acetylcholine. Mazur and Bodansky,1 in an experimental study of the inhibition of tissue cholinesterase by one of the fluorophosphates, diisopropyl fluorophosphate, showed that a parallelism exists between in vitro sensitivities and the extents to which various tissue cholinesterases are inhibited in vivo. The inhibition of cholinesterase activity of serum,

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