A method for the determination of the convulsive threshold by means of graded electrical stimulation has been described by Spiegel1 and has been employed for comparing the action of certain drugs. The apparatus used in this investigation represents a simplification of that devised by Spiegel and embodies also the arrangement of electrodes employed by Krasnogorski.2 A description and diagram have been published.3
The point of departure for the investigation was the fact that although phenobarbital is one of the most efficient anticonvulsant drugs in common use, other barbiturates are comparatively ineffective, a fact that is often observed clinically and is strikingly demonstrated by the apparatus employed. For this reason and from certain theoretical considerations,3 a search was made among phenyl derivatives of the general type of phenobarbital, including phenyl, cresyl and tolyl sulfonates, benzoates, ketones and esters, with such radicals as carbamic, barbituric and malic acid,
MERRITT HH, PUTNAM TJ. A NEW SERIES OF ANTICONVULSANT DRUGS TESTED BY EXPERIMENTS ON ANIMALS. Arch NeurPsych. 1938;39(5):1003–1015. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1938.02270050129007
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