The ideal chemotherapeutic agent may be defined as one which, by inhibiting certain vital functions of the invading micro-organism or neutralizing its products, terminates the disease without causing any toxic effect on the host. This definition presupposes that the point of attack must be on a specific function or structure unique to the micro-organism, so that the tissues and organs of the host escape the toxic action.
Ethylhydrocupreine (optochin) was introduced by Morgenroth and Levy1 in 1911 for the treatment of pneumococcic infections, after study of numerous other quinine derivatives. A good deal of enthusiasm followed the early experimental results and ethylhydrocupreine was used in the treatment of human pneumonia. However, the observations of Moore and Chesney2 led to the conclusion that the use of ethylhydrocupreine in the treatment of pneumonia could not be recommended since it was impossible to administer an amount sufficient to achieve an effective
MacLEOD CM. CHEMOTHERAPY OF PNEUMOCOCCIC PNEUMONIA: CLINICAL LECTURE AT ST. LOUIS SESSION. JAMA. 1939;113(15):1405–1410. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.72800400006008a
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