DMPS (2,3-dimercaptopropane-1-sulfonate, dimaval) decreases the body burden of mercury in humans exposed to mercurous chloride

J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 1998 Oct;287(1):8-12.


DMPS (2,3-dimercaptopropane-1-sulfonate, Na salt), when used as a challenge test for mercury in workers involved in the production of a calomel skin-bleaching lotion and in direct contact with mercurous chloride, elevated urine levels of mercury. A DMPS treatment regimen was devised and initiated. Three days after the challenge test, DMPS was administered p.o. (400 mg per day) for 8 days, followed by a no-treatment period of five days. A new cycle of DMPS treatment for 7 days was initiated and followed by 5 days without treatment. A third period of treatment was begun for 6 days, followed by a 5-day no-treatment period. The urinary mercury greatly increased during those periods when DMPS was administered (1754, 314, and 173 microgram/24 h for the periods 1, 2 and 3, compared with 106, 48 and 53 microgram/24 h on the corresponding no-treatment periods). One of the workers presented signs of drug intolerance and was discharged after receiving the first cycle of treatment. DMPS treatment was effective in lowering the body burden of mercury and in decreasing the urinary mercury concentration to normal levels.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Body Burden
  • Chelating Agents / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mercury / urine
  • Mercury Compounds / pharmacokinetics*
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Exposure*
  • Unithiol / pharmacology*


  • Chelating Agents
  • Mercury Compounds
  • Unithiol
  • Mercury
  • calomel