IN 1882 GNAUCK1 discovered the effectiveness of hyoscine in palliation of the symptoms of parkinsonism and opened the present era of medical therapy in that disease. In the next half century or more little was added besides the demonstration of similar action by the other alkaloids in the solanaceous group, atropine and hyoscyamine; extracts of the stramonium leaf,2 and preparations of other plants containing the mydriatic alkaloids.3 No one drug or combination of drugs has established its supremacy over the others because of the notoriously variable manifestations of the disease and pattern of response to therapy, which is constant only in the definite residue of obvious symptomatology following optimal medication.4 In addition to certain drugs with limited application, such as amphetamine sulfate, occasionally useful in the postencephalitic syndrome, a wide assortment of compounds with nonspecific effect have been reported on, including barbiturates, salicylates,5 and vitamins.
GAIR DS, DUCEY J. CHEMICAL STRUCTURE OF SUBSTANCES EFFECTIVE IN TREATMENT OF PARKINSONISM. Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1950;85(2):284-298. doi:10.1001/archinte.1950.00230080088006