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August 19, 1939


JAMA. 1939;113(8):683. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.02800330049015

The development of knowledge concerning the vitamins includes striking examples of the application of the results of experimental investigation to clinical medicine. In many instances the routine clinical use of the vitamin has preceded definite information regarding its chemical constitution. The use of concentrates has been of great practical benefit. The point is admirably illustrated by our present knowledge of the vitamins of the B group or the so-called vitamin B complex. The early history of vitamin B demonstrated that this factor had profound effects on growth, gastrointestinal motility, appetite, carbohydrate metabolism, integration of nerve action and other physiologic processes and functions. These observations led to a search for individual substances as members of the B group of vitamins. The chemical nature of vitamin B1 and of vitamin B2, or G, has now been established and confirmed by synthesis, as has also the structure of the antipellagra substance