Caine Anesthetics

Modern day local anesthetics (lidocaine, novocaine) all have cocaine as their parent molecule.  Demostrate to students how "tweaking" a molecule can rid it of deleterious properties (addictive in the case of cocaine) while maintaining its desireable properties (anesthetic). Also, in looking at novocaine (ester linkage) versus lidocaine (amide linkage), students explore the relative stabilities of these two functional groups.  Surprisingly, many student still think novocaine is the anesthetics dentists use!


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