Biochemical and biological evidence of the activity of high potencies
Verantwortlicher Herausgeber dieser Rubrik:
20. Dezember 2017 (online)
1. A method is described for investigating the possible action of microdoses of mercuric chloride on the hydrolysis of soluble starch with malt diastase.
2. The microdoses of the mercuric chloride used in the latest crucial series carried out in 1946, 1948, and 1952, were what are termed ‘high potencies’ made in accordance with the pharmaceutical method of preparation of drags ordinarily used in the practice of homceotherapy.
3. These microdoses were prepared by separate stages of dilution, the solution at each stage being subjected to mechanical shock. The solutions were, theoretically, ‘dilutions’ of the order of 1 in 10−61 and on present physical theory would not contain any molecules of the original mercuric chloride.
4. The difference in rate of hydrolysis between flasks containing starch, diastase, and distilled water (controls) and flasks containing starch, diastase and microdoses of mercuric chloride (tests) were compared colorimetrically by the Spekker absorptiometer, and the frequencies of the differences statistically analysed, as the results obtained showed biological scatter. More than 500 such comparisons were carried out. The differences of means were examined by the Fisher “t” test, the variances tested and Cochrane and Cox’s test applied where indicated. All the series gave a highly significant difference in the rate of hydrolysis between controls and tests, the microdoses stimulating the process. Statistically the significance is shown by the fact that a probability of <0.001 was obtained independently in each of the three years 1946, 1948 and 1952. The control results gave an approximately normal distribution.
5. The distribution, control methods, and accessory control procedures were considered to exclude, as a cause of the effects, adsorption of the original drug and the presence of extraneous contaminants by chance solely in test flasks. The only difference between control and microdose flasks was the addition of microdose, the distilled water being common to both controls and tests.
6. It was concluded that a factor, unidentified, derived from the mercuric chloride used, was present in solutions prepared by serial dilution with mechanical shock which could affect the distilled water diluent, that this change was transferable to subsequent ‘ultra-molecular’ stages of ‘dilution’, and that this factor was the source of the activity in the microdose solutions producing the acceleration of the rate of hydrolysis.
7. In an addendum there is described recent biological work which is also providing evidence of the presence of an active selective factor in ‘high potencies’ derived from Strophanthus sarmentosus by the same methods of dilution with mechanical shock.
*Presented in abbreviated form on March 16th, 1954, to the Scottish Branch of the Faculty on behalf of the Boyd Medical Research Trust Institute, Glasgow.
**This article is a reprint of a previously published article. For citation purposes, please use the original publication details; Br Hom J, 1954; 44: 7–44. Note: Appendices not included.DOI of original item: 10.1016/S0007-0785(54)80018-4.
- Boyd, 1942 Boyd W.E. The action of microdoses of mercuric chloride on diastase. Brit. Horn. J. 1941, 1942; 31 (01) 32-33.
- Boyd, 1946 Boyd W.E. An investigation regarding the action on diastase of microdoses of mercuric chloride when prepared with and without mechanical shock. Brit. Horn. J. 1946; 36: 3-33.
- Boyd, 1953 Boyd W.E. The application of a new biological heart-rate recorder to the study of the action on the frog heart of small doses of Crataegus, Digitalis, Strophanthus gratus and of trace doses of Strophanthus sarmentosus . Brit. Horn. J. 1953; 43: 11-23.
- Boyd, 1952 Boyd W.E., Eadie W.R. A heart-rate recorder for biological experiments. Elec. Eng. 1952; 24: 102-105.
- Di Cablo, 1947 Di Cablo F.J., Redfern S. α-amylase from Bacillus subtilis. 1. Purification and physical properties. Arch. Biochem. 1947; 15: 333-342.
- Gunn, 1946 Gunn, JC. (1946) Personal communications.
- Hanes, 1937 Hanes C.S. The action of amylases in relation to the structure of starch and its metabolism in the plant. IV. Starch degradation by the component amylases of malt. New Phytol. 1937; 36: 189-215.
- Hobson, 1952 Hobson P.N., MacPherson M. Amylases of Clostridium, Butyricum and a Streptococcus isolated from the rumen of the sheep. Biochem. J. 1952; 52: 671-679.
- Hopkins, 1939 Hopkins FG. (1939) Personal communication.
- Leeser, 1938 Leeser O. Homoeopathy and its pharmaceutical aspects. Pharmaceut. J. 1938; 87: 495-496 523–525.
- Meyer, 1947 Meyer K.H., Fuld M., Bebnfeld P. Purification et Cristallization de 1’α-Amylase de Bacterie. Experientia 1947; 3: 411-412.
- Persson, 1932 Persson W. Dtsch. Z. Horn.. 1932 11. Heft 5.
- Persson, 1933 Persson W. Arch. Int. Pharmacodyn 1933; 46: 279.
- Persson, 1934 Persson W. (1934) Personal communications.
- Persson, 1935 Persson, W. (1935) Personal communications.
- Persson, 1936 Persson, W. (1936) Personal communications.
- Rundle, 1943 Rundle R.E., French D. The configuration of starch and the starch-iodide complex. II. Optical properties of creptalline starch fractions. J. Amer. Chem. Soc. 1943; 65: 558-561.
- Swanson, 1948 Swanson M.A. Studies on the structure of polysaccharides. IV. Relation of the iodine colour to the structure. J. Biol. Chem. 1948; 172: 825-837.
- Weiser, 1949 Weiser H.B. A textbook of colloid chemistry. pp. 17–22 2nd edition New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc; 1949.