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Eschscholtzia.

Botanical name:

Eschscholtzia. Eschscholtzia californica, Chamisso. California Poppy.—Attention has been brought to this Californian member of the Papaveraceae, as a powerful soporific and analgesic, which is free from the disadvantages of opium. The plant is extensively cultivated and there are now a number of garden varieties. Bardet and Adrain (G. H. M. C., Nov., 1888) assert that they have obtained a glucoside, an alkaloid, and morphine in the proportion of from five to six grains in two pounds of the dried product. According to Fischer and Tweeden, there are seven alkaloids in Eschscholtzia californica; protopine, β- and γ-homochelidonine, "alkaloid a," "alkaloid b," sanguinarine and chelerythrine. As far as could be determined from the small quantities obtained, the alkaloids designated as a and b differ from any other alkaloids thus far known. (Ph. Archiv., 1902, No. 7.) The narcotic power of the drug seems to be very weak, since, according to Bardet, three drachms were necessary to kill a rabbit. Ter-Zakariant (G. M. P., Feb., 1889) states that the alcoholic extract acts as a respiratory depressant and narcotic, affecting in toxic dose also the spinal cord. Dujardin-Beaumetz has used the extract in commencing doses of twelve grains (0.78 Gm.), increasing to one hundred and eighty-five grains (12 Gm.) a day, and affirms that it is a harmless soporific and analgesic.


The Dispensatory of the United States of America, 1918, was edited by Joseph P. Remington, Horatio C. Wood and others.



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