Drugs: How Thalidomide Works

The deforming effects of thalidomide on unborn children have been known for almost seven years, and the drug's manufacturers are even now on trial in Alsdorf, Germany (TIME, Sept. 6). Still, no one has been able to explain just what it was in the tranquilizer-sleeping pill that produced seal-flipper limbs in children. Last week a German-born investigator with a grandfatherly manner was finally able to pinpoint to the American Chemical Society how thalidomide did its damage.

Dr. Heinz M. Wuest, 76, supposedly retired but still active in his laboratory as a consultant to the Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research, pointed...

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