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HORMOLIGOSIS IN PHARMACOLOGY

John F. Townsend, A.B.; Thomas D. Luckey, Ph.D.
JAMA. 1960;173(1):44-48. doi:10.1001/jama.1960.73020190007010.
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In 1888 Schulz1 published data indicating that poisonous substances had a stimulatory effect when given in small doses. This became the basis of the Arndt-Schulz law of today. Subsequent work has indicated that this is a general law which extends into areas seemingly far removed from the toxins or chemical substances which first interested Schulz. Thus, not only is the effect noted with chemicals but it may also be observed with such entities as radiation, heat, and cold, and indeed with any agent capable of exerting an effect on cells. The term hormoligosis has been proposed2 to refer to that part of hormology which includes the entire phenomenon of the stimulatory effect of a small amount of an agent on living organisms.

Hormesis3 is that area of hormoligosis which deals with the stimulatory action of a subinhibitory amount of a toxin. Such compounds are known as hormetics.

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The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
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