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Thiamin_fall_2011 - Thiamin Vitamin B1 Discovery Beriberi...

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Thiamin – Vitamin B1 Discovery – Beriberi Beriberi described as early as 2600 BC in China. Became endemic in East Asia when the practice of polishing rice became widespre 1886 commission was sent to the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) to try to isolate the organism. The commission failed but Dr. Christian Eijkman stayed. Eijkman (chickens) – demonstrated similar symptoms in chickens and that symptoms disappeared when the rice hulls were added back. Gerrit Grijns found other foods could prevent beriberi and determined it was not a result of bacteria.
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Discovery continued Dr. Casimer Funk extracted a crystalline material from the rice bran he labeled the anti beriberi factor but he was wrong – it was niacin. Jansen and Donath managed to isolate the molecule but missed the sulfur atom and published the wrong structure. Dr. Robert Williams worked for 25 years to isolate the substance and in 1934 was able isolate 1/3 of an ounce of the crystalline substance. Procedure was very costly. But Williams was able to publish the correct structure. 2 years later Williams and colleagues were able to synthesize the material they called “anti beriberi factor” or “anti beriberi vitamine” AMA hated the name. so Williams called it “thiamin” representing the sulfur molecule and the amine group. Thiamin was the first vitamin to be discovered.
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Fig. 9-7, p. 323 Thiamin Structure * Diphosphate addition occurs here to form the active coenzyme thiamin diphosphate (TDP).
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Sources and absorption of Thiamin Widely distributed in foods, meat (especially pork ), legumes , sunflower seeds, whole, fortified and enriched grain products, cereals , and bread. Also yeast , wheat germ and so products.
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