From Big Medical Encyclopedia

PTOMAINES (synonym ptomatina) — the outdated term used in biological literature for designation of group of nitrogen-containing chemical compounds, the so-called ptomaine which is formed as a result of ichorization of proteins of corpses and protein-rich products: meat, fish, yeast and so forth. Referred to P. various connections, hl. obr. biogenic amines — putrestsin, pentamethylenediamine (see), agmatin (alpha aminobutylguanidine), neurine (see), and also products of enzymatic decarboxylation of some amino acids which are a part of natural proteins — a histamine, tyramine, a triptamin. Toxicity of ptomaine is caused not by P. as mistakenly believed earlier, and generally bacterial toxins which are formed as a result of life activity of the microorganisms participating in ichorization of proteic matters. Toxicity of the majority of the connections combined before under the name «ptomaines» is small.

See also Rotting .

Bibliography: Gorkin V. 3. Aminoxidases and their value in medicine, M., 1981; Analysis of biogenic amines and their related enzymes, ed. by D. Glick, N. Y. a. o., 1971; Polyamines in normal and neoplastic growth, ed. by D. H. Russell, N. Y., 1973.

T. T. Berezov, H. H. Chernov.