Bernheim,1 in 1941, observed that salicylic acid and benzoic acid increase the oxygen consumption and carbon dioxide production of the tubercle bacillus. He concluded that these acids are oxidized as metabolites and that similar chemical configurations possibly play a part in the metabolism of the bacillus. Lehmann,2 in 1946, investigated a large number of derivatives of benzoic acid and of salicylic acid, searching for a substance with bacteriostatic properties against tubercle bacilli. The most active substance found was 4-aminosalicylic or para-aminosalicylic acid. This substance was bacteriostatic in a concentration of 0.15 mg. per hundred cubic centimeters for the BCG strain of the bovine type of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and exerted a favorable effect on clinical tuberculosis. The inhibitory effect of para-aminosalicylic acid (PAS) in vitro was confirmed by Sievers and by Youmans. In vivo experiments on mice by Youmans and in guinea pigs by Feldman, Karlson and Hinshaw3
PARA-AMINOSALICYLIC ACID IN THE TREATMENT OF PULMONARY TUBERCULOSIS. JAMA. 1949;141(9):605. doi:10.1001/jama.1949.02910090031009
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