IN 1910 Dale and Laidlaw1 advanced the hypothesis that histamine or histamine-like bodies were the chemical compounds responsible for the phenomena of anaphylaxis. Since that time numerous investigators have produced evidence which seems to confirm that original idea, and the hypothesis has been extended to explain all or most of the phenomena associated with allergy in the broadest sense.
Diphenhydramine hydrochloride (benadryl hydrochloride®) and tripelennamine hydrochloride (pyribenzamine hydrochloride®) were the first drugs available in this country which seemed to play the role of "antihistaminic" agents, although they were preceded in Europe by numerous other preparations. Chemists have been and are still trying to find an ideal drug which (1) will have little or no side effects and (2) will produce better effects through penetration of the skin.
However strong the evidence may seem, histamine has never been proved entirely responsible for all the allergic manifestations attributed to it.
WOOLDRIDGE WE, JOSEPH HL. DISSEMINATED AND CIRCUMSCRIBED NEURODERMATITIS TREATED WITH PHENINDAMINE (THEPHORIN®). Arch Derm Syphilol. 1949;60(3):390–403. doi:10.1001/archderm.1949.01530030086009
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