And the drugs derived from it are still in use today.
We often lament that modern people have done everything they can to pursue beauty, but in fact, the ancients also made many amazing moves in this respect, and belladonna "cosmetic contact lenses" is one of them. However, unlike today's cosmetic contact lenses, its function is to make the pupils bigger.
Solanum nigrum is a herb of Solanaceae, which is native to Europe. In ancient times, belladonna was regarded as medicine and poison because the extract of belladonna contained substances such as atropine, which could block an acetylcholine receptor in the human body. this produces a series of effects, including palpitations, relief of spasms, blurred vision, dizziness, pupil dilation and so on.
historically, it was thought that dilated pupils would make the eyes look more beautiful, so some European women pursued this beauty by dripping belladonna solution into their eyes. The name "belladonna" of belladonna means "beautiful woman".
belladonna depicted in Kohler Medicinal plants (1897). Picture from: Wikipedia
of course, it comes at a price. If nothing else, not being able to see clearly is painful enough.
although it is not worth doing cosmetic contact lenses, belladonna is indeed an important member in the history of medicine. Today, drugs derived from belladonna are still active in many therapeutic fields. For example, this is where the mydriatic drugs used in optometry come from.
in fact, there are many similar stories in the history of drug development. Some bioactive components are often found in nature, and reliable drugs can be obtained after research, modification and verification. That's where drugs like aspirin and artemisinin come from.
many of the drugs inspired by nature come from plants, and animals have relatively less varied metabolites (a very important reason is that plants often rely on chemicals to protect themselves, while animals rely on running. ). However, some drugs do come from animals. For example, batroxobin from snake venom can be used as a hemostatic:
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(the main part of this article has been posted on other accounts before, but anyway, I wrote _ (: snake "∠) _)