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The name coined in 1921 by the German pharmacologist Otto Loewi (1873–1961) for what is now called acetylcholine, following his pioneering experimental demonstration of the chemical nature of nervous transmission. Electrical stimulation of the vagus nerve of a frog's heart, held in a beaker of saline solution and still beating, stimulated the release of a substance that, when pumped into a separate beaker containing a second frog's heart with its vagus nerve removed, caused the beating of the second heart to slow as if its vagus nerve had been stimulated. [From German Vagus vagus + Stoff material or substance]

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