CME INDIA Presentation by ⚜ Dr. M. Gowri Sankar, MD, Senior Assistant Professor, Dept. of General Medicine, Government Medical College and ESI Hospital, Coimbatore.

Today’s History Feature:

Joseph Caventou

(Jun 30, 1795 – May 5, 1877)

💠French Chemist

💠Founder of Alkaloid Chemistry

His contributions…

🔸Caventou was the son of an apothecary. He studied Pharmacy and started his career as a Professor of Toxicology (1835 – 1860) at School of Pharmacy in Paris.

🔸He further associated with his mentor Joseph Pelletier, who did a notable research on plant alkaloids.

🔸After some time, together they discovered Chlorophyll (choose the Greek word of Green leaf) in 1817. It’s a green chemical used by plants for photosynthesis.

🔸The Duo also extracted useful plant alkaloids such as:

🔅Emetine (1817) from Ipecacuanha.

🔅Strychnine (1818) from Nux vomica.

🔅Colchicine (1819) from Colchicum autumnale plant.

🔅Quinine (1820) from the bark of cinchona tree.

🔅Caffeine (1821) from coffee beans.

🔸However, both refused to patent their discovery of their compounds.

🔸Subsequently, they published the method of Extracting Quinine and Cinchonine from Cinchona bark. Therefore, anybody could use the method and manufacture Quinine to combat malaria.

🔸To honour his devoted work, the crater “Caventou” on moon has been given his name.

🔸Both were honoured Philatelically by the French Government in 1970 on the celebration of 150th Anniversary of the Discovery of Quinine.

🔸The year 2020 was the 200th Anniversary of the Discovery of Quinine.

A Day to Commemorate…

The Duo Who Contributed Alkaloid Chemistry to the Field of Medicine

The Discoverer of Quinine from the Bark of Fever Tree

Joseph Pelletier 🙏

Joseph Caventou 🙏

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