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Br J Clin Pharmacol. May 1980; 9(5): 461–465.
PMCID: PMC1429942

Sensory responses of human skin to synthetic histamine analogues and histamine.


The potential for itch production in human skin of the synthetic analogues of histamine, 2-methyl histamine (an H1-receptor agonist) and 4-methyl histamine and dimaprit (H2-receptor agonists) has been studied in vivo and compared with histamine. Itch thresholds for 2-methyl histamine were consistently much higher than for histamine (P < 0.001). The H1-receptor antagonist chlorpheniramine raised the itch thresholds to 2-methyl histamine and histamine significantly (P < 0.001). Pruritus was not obtained with either 4-methyl histamine or dimaprit. No evidence of synergism between 2-methyl histamine and either 4-methyl histamine or dimaprit was found. The results suggest that histamine-induced pruritus is mediated in part through the H1-receptor and in part via an additional (but probably non-H2) mechanism.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Davies MG, Marks R, Horton RJ, Storari FE. The efficacy of histamine antagonists as antipruritics in experimentally induced pruritus. Arch Dermatol Res. 1979 Oct;266(2):117–120. [PubMed]
  • Eyre P, Chand N. Preliminary evidence for two subclasses of histamine H2-receptors. Agents Actions. 1979 Apr;9(1):1–3. [PubMed]
  • Greaves MW, McDonald-Gibson W. Itch: role of prostaglandins. Br Med J. 1973 Sep 22;3(5881):608–609. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Lovell CR, Burton PA, Duncan EH, Burton JL. Prostaglandins and pruritus. Br J Dermatol. 1976 Mar;94(3):273–275. [PubMed]
  • RILEY JF. The effects of histamine-liberators on the mast cells of the rat. J Pathol Bacteriol. 1953 Apr;65(2):471–479. [PubMed]

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