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Der Schmerz

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 280– 283 | Cite as

Sertürner und Morphin – eine historische Vignette

  • I. Jurna
Schmerzforum

Zusammenfassung.

Friedrich Wilhelm Sertürner wird 1783 bei Paderborn geboren. Er besteht hier die Prüfung als Apothekergehilfe und teilt in einem Leserbrief die Entdeckung eines alkaliähnlichen Stoffes im Opium mit. Seit 1806 ist er in Einbeck und veröffentlicht 2 weitere Arbeiten über diesen Stoff, den er Morphium nennt. Durch eine von Gay-Lussac angeregte Übersetzung ins Französische gelingt ihm die Anerkennung seiner Forschung. Er legt 1809 seine Prüfung zum Apotheker ab und eröffnet unter Nutzung eines französischen Gesetzes zur Gewerbefreiheit eine Apotheke, die er nach der Verbannung Napoleons I. wieder schließen muss. Im Jahr 1821 geht er nach Hameln und übernimmt dort eine Apotheke. Er stirbt 1841 und wird in Einbeck beigesetzt.

Sertürners Verdienst ist die Entdeckung des Morphins mit einigen seiner Wirkungen und die Einleitung der Alkaloidforschung.

Schlüsselwörter

Friedrich Wilhelm Sertürner Entdeckung des Morphins Alkaloidforschung Einfluss Napoleons 

Sertürner and morphium – a historical vignette

Abstract.

Friedrich Wilhelm Sertürner was born near Paderborn in 1783. At the age of twenty he passed examinations as a pharmacist’s assistant in Paderborn. In a letter to the editor of Trommsdorffs Journal der Pharmacie Vol 13 (1805) he reported on the isolation of a substance from opium which showed alkaline character and was later called by him „morphium“.

In 1806, Sertürner moved to Einbeck where he first worked as assistant to the tenant of the magistrate’s pharmacy. In 1809, he became pharmacist and, since the tenant was already 75 years old, he intented to take charge of the pharmacy. However,he was not successful. During the invassion of Napoleon Bonaparte’s troops into Europe, French legislation became valid in those parts which fell under French government. According to French law, Sertürner was allowed to open a second pharmacy.

In Einbeck, Sertürner continued research work on morphine and published the results in two papers. In one of these (1817), he introduced observations made with the drug in humans and for the first time called it „morphium“. The French chemist Gay-Lussac showed interest in that publication and ordered a translation into French which earned Sertürner the scientific break-through. His was the first achievement in alkaloid research, and for that he received a doctor degree from the university of Jena in 1817.

When Napoleon was finally defeated, Sertürner had to close his pharmacy in Einbeck and found another one in Hameln. When asiatic cholera spread in Germany in 1831, he postulated that cholera is caused by a poisonous,animated reproducing organism and made suggestions to avoid infection which are still valid today.

Sertürner was honoured by many institutions but still felt not properly esteemed. His behavour become odd and he debilitated. He died in 1841 and was buried in Einbeck.

Keywords

Friedrich Wilhelm Sertürner Isolation of morphine Alkaloid research Napoleon’s influence on Sertürners life 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • I. Jurna
    • 1
  1. 1.Joachimstr. 43Moers

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