Psychiatric Quarterly, Vol. 77, No. 1, Spring 2006 (
OR ANXIOLYTIC? A HISTORICAL
Dilip Ramchandani, M.D., Francisco L
noz, M.D., Ph.D.,
and Cecilio Alamo, M.D., Ph.D.
Meprobamate was the ﬁrst successful anti-anxiety drug of the modern era. On
the 50th anniversary of its introduction, the authors trace the development
of its synthesis, marketing and runaway success to understand the scientiﬁc
and socio-political factors that may have shaped its use in clinical psychiatry.
The relationship of this drug to the earlier development of chlorpromazine is
explored to clarify the imperatives of drug classiﬁcation in modern psychiatry.
KEY WORDS: tranquilizers; anti-anxiety; anti-psychotic; history; classiﬁcation.
The year 2005 marks the 50th anniversary of the clinical introduc-
tion of meprobamate. It was the ﬁrst drug to be sold speciﬁcally as an
Dilip Ramchandani, M.D., is Professor of Psychiatry, Drexel University College of
Medicine, Philadelphia, Pa.
noz, M.D., Ph.D., and Cecilio Alamo, M.D., Ph.D., are afﬁliated
with Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Alcal
Address correspondence to Dilip Ramchandani, M.D., 241 Merion Road, Merion
Station, PA. 19066-1718; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
2006 Springer Science+Business Media, Inc.