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January 1943


Author Affiliations


From the Department of Nervous and Mental Diseases, Northwestern University Medical School, and the Minnie Frances Kleman Memorial Fund.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1943;71(1):95-106. doi:10.1001/archinte.1943.00210010101008

Although pyridine is used in many laboratories and chemical industries as a solvent for anhydrous mineral salts, in synthesis of organic compounds and in analytic procedures, only a few instances of its toxic effect on man have been recorded.

The unfortunate outcome of an experiment in the treatment of epilepsy by the use of pyridine afforded us an opportunity to observe the development of its toxic effect. Since the effect of pyridine on the human organism has been incompletely studied and knowledge concerning its action is sketchy, we concluded that our observations were worthy of description.

In searching for an anticonvulsant which does not produce a narcotic side effect, we studied the effect of pyridine on convulsions produced by the intravenous injection into rabbits of minimal convulsant doses of metrazol.

It was found that pyridine and some of its derivatives, such as niacin (nicotinic acid) amide, significantly reduced the severity