The term "theobromine", incidentally, comes from Greek, "drink of the Gods", and
was applied to chocholate in drinkable form when it was first brought to Europe.

Ronn Blankenship wrote:

> At 02:48 PM 11/16/02, Marc A. Schindler wrote:
> >Caffeine's chemical name is trimethylxanthine.
> 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine, to be precise.  Or
> 1,3,7,-trimethyl 2,6-dioxopurine, or
> 3,7-dihydro-1,3,7-trimethyl-1H-purine-2,6-dione
> >Here's a link to a site that lists the other ingredients:
> >
> >I would say, offhand, that theobromine
> 3,7-dimethylxanthine.  Or
> 3,7,-dimethyl 2,6-dioxopurine, or
> 3,7-dihydro-3,7-dimethyl-1H-purine-2,6-dione
> >is the only other "active" ingredient;
> As caffeine is the primary methylxanthine compound in coffee, theobromine
> is the primary member of the family in chocolate.  The third member of the
> family is theophylline
> 1,3-dimethylxanthine, or
> 1,3,-dimethyl 2,6-dioxopurine, or
> 3,7-dihydro-1,3-dimethyl-1H-purine-2,6-dione
> which is more common in tea than in coffee or chocolate, and is used in the
> treatment of asthma (prescription brand name "Theo-dur", etc.).
> (FWIW, I've been unable to find out why there is apparently no such
> compound as 1,7-trimethylxanthine.  Not only is no such compound listed in
> the Merck Index or other standard references, none of the chemists or
> biologists I work with at school had an answer, either.)
> >most of the other things get oxidized during roasting, and some of them
> >are responsible
> >for the raw coffee bean's bitter taste.
> As alkaloids, all members of the methylxanthine family have a bitter
> taste.  I know that "No-Doz" brand caffeine pills have some sort of sweet
> flavoring added to hide the bitter taste, though I don't know it that's
> true of other brands.  I imagine that if you held one in your mouth for any
> length of time, though, the bitter taste would overwhelm the flavoring, as
> happens with other types of pills . . .
> --Ronn! :)
> I always knew that I would see the first man on the Moon.
> I never dreamed that I would see the last.
>          --Dr. Jerry Pournelle
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Marc A. Schindler
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland

“Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time he will pick
himself up and continue on” – Winston Churchill

Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the author
solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the author’s employer,
nor those of any organization with which the author may be associated.

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