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August 23, 1952


JAMA. 1952;149(17):1563-1568. doi:10.1001/jama.1952.72930340022010b

Primaquine, 8-(4-amino-1-methylbutylamino)-6-methoxyquinoline,1 a new curative agent for vivax malaria, has recently been extensively tested in the Armed Forces. Since mid-December, 1951, veterans returning from Korea have received 15 mg. of primaquine base once daily for two weeks aboard Military Sea Transport ships after termination of weekly chloroquine (aralen®) suppression at the time of embarkation.2 Chloroquine remains in the blood in effective concentration for several weeks; it suppresses clinical symptoms by eliminating the erythrocytic forms of the malaria parasite but does not prevent subsequent relapses. Relapses can be prevented, however, by the administration of primaquine, which acts primarily against the exoerythrocytic parasites. Thus, combined action of the two drugs has been exploited during the transpacific voyage to achieve radical cure of vivax infections before symptoms have developed. Primaquine, combined with chloroquine, has also been employed extensively in treating clinical attacks of vivax malaria in Army installations in the United