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J Altern Complement Med. 2009 Oct;15(10):1121-6. doi: 10.1089/acm.2008.0614.

In vitro examination of potentized atropine sulfate dilutions on the contractility of the isolated rat ileum.

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1 Institut für Veterinär-Physiologie, Freie Universität Berlin , Berlin, Germany .



Atropine sulphate, a competitive antagonist of acetylcholine (ACh) at muscarinic receptors, was first isolated from Atropa belladonna, one of the most used and best known homeopathic medicines. It has been suggested that high potencies of homeopathic atropine sulphate might have an influence on ACh-induced contraction of smooth muscles. The aim of the study was to determine the effects of homeopathic dilutions of atropine sulphate D6, D32, and D100 compared to the potentized diluents L6, L32, and L100 on ACh-induced contraction of isolated rat ileum.


Forty-eight (48) ileal sections from 12 male Wistar rats were incubated in modified Krebs solutions, and the contractile activity responses to ACh obtained in the absence and presence of the test substances were recorded. Investigators and biometrician were completely blinded.


No significant effects of atropine sulphate D6, D32, or D100 could be found (all p > 0.4 after Bonferoni-Holm correction) compared to the potentized diluents L6, L32, and L100, respectively. These figures did not change considerably even when strict a priori criteria were applied that define a measurement as valid and comparable.


Our experiments could not replicate previous results on the effects of homeopathic atropine.

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