Some four years ago the aminoacid dimethylcysteine (penicillamine) was introduced into clinical medicine as a chelating agent1, 2 and the time is now ripe to review what is known of the chemistry, pharmacology and therapeutic action of this compound.
It was a result of urgent war time research into the chemistry of the penicillins that led to the discovery of a new aminoacid which received its name, penicillamine, from the parent compound.3 Some years later it was shown to be a sulphur aminoacid structurally related to cysteine, but differing from it by the addition of two methyl groups to the
PENICILLAMINE: THE PHARMACOLOGY OF A CHELATING AGENT1. Ann Intern Med. 1960;53:1090–1096. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-53-5-1090
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1960;53(5):1090-1096.
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